Plastic Pollution
April 05 2012

Rise Above Plastics Goes Global

by Bill Hickman

Surfrider's Rise Above Plastics program started on the West Coast, has made an impact in coastal communities across the U.S. and now reaches to Europe and beyond.  Surfrider’s Europe flagship event “Ocean Initiatives” held it's kickoff weekend from March 22 to March 25.  The “Ocean Initiatives” are an awareness program highlighting the issue of marine litter combined with cleanups operations.  This year “Ocean Initiatives” highlights the Rise Above Plastics program through educational and communication tools.

“Ocean Initiatives” is a yearlong series of events with a major focus on this first weekend of spring.  The 17th anniversary kickoff weekend featured 604 beaches, lakes, rivers and seabed cleanups organized by volunteers and local chapters rallying around the Rise Above Plastics theme.  Traditionally based in Europe, Ocean Initiatives aims to grow internationally and this year 75 cleanups were hosted beyond Europe during the first weekend including Japan, Argentina and Morocco.

In 2011: 1,200 cleanups were hosted with a total of over 42,000 participants.  There were 35 countries involved and 8,500 school children participated

For 2012, Surfrider Foundation Europe is targeting another 1200 cleanup operations, with an increase of international participation. 940 cleanups are already registered for this year.

Click Here to find out more.  Nice work Surfrider Europe!