Plastic and the sea

According to reports published in Science Magazine in September 2020 (Borrelle et al.) and in National Geographic in October 2020, the amount of plastic waste that flows into the ocean has increased drastically from the 2015 figure of 8.8 million tons to between 19 and 23 million tons in 2016. This threat requires joint action by governments, companies and consumers, and strenuous efforts by NGOs like ours to continue to raise awareness of how our actions and decisions as consumers impact our environment.

 

Our awareness-raising work through action at FLC is permanent. We disseminate updated information on plastic pollution affecting rivers, lagoons, beaches and oceans and its consequences on biodiversity, and we encourage the public to adopt new habits to contribute to reducing the impact on our ecosystems of plastic and other pollutants.

 

There is a long way to go, but in our communities there is increasing awareness of the consequences of our actions on the environment. For the past 3 years we have been implementing short, high-impact campaigns on specific issues, concentrating on the summer months when visitors arrive in their thousands to our areas.

Awareness-raising campaign on the impact of plastic pollution, #NoSeamosBasura (Let’s not be trash)

Since 2018 we have been working on raising awareness of the impact of plastic pollution on our coasts, lagoons and their biodiversity. A campaign was launched on our social media, #NoSeamosBasura, which together with beach cleanups and workshops had very good results.

Campaign #VeranoSinFiltros (Summer without filters)

We focused our summer 2020 campaign on cigarette filters as highly toxic pollutants. In our beach cleanups, cigarette butts rank second only to plastic bottle caps on the list of most frequently found garbage. More awareness is needed among smokers of the brutal impact of this waste which is discarded in our beaches, lagoon coasts, sidewalks, and parking and outdoor areas of bars and restaurants.

 

The campaign included high-impact images and videos via social media, and ashtrays and signage were set up in popular spots at La Paloma, José Ignacio and La Juanita, as well as in strategic points on Laguna Garzón and Laguna de Rocha. 25,000 cigarette filters were collected in 40 days, as the campaign was abruptly cut short by the outbreak of Covid-19 in Uruguay.

 

 

Beach and lagoon cleanups

The cleanups on beaches and lagoon coastlines that we carry out regularly are an excellent awareness-raising medium on the threat posed by plastic pollution. We celebrate the UN world days, like World Environment Day, World Ocean Day and World Wetlands Day by carrying out cleanups and related talks.

 

Every year we organize activities in our areas for the International Beach Cleanup, launched over 30 years ago by Ocean Conservancy.

 

More recently we have begun working upstream of our lagoons, as it is essential to bring people to the realization that actions in apparently unconnected territories will have direct impact on the health of both lagoons and the ocean.

Current Programmes

Public Policies
and Governance

Migratory Birds
and Livestock

Environmental Awareness Programme