Did you know?
- We produce nearly 300 million tons of plastic every year, half of which is for single use.
- More than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped into our oceans every year.
- We have developed a “disposable” lifestyle; around 50% of plastic is used just once and thrown away.
- Packaging is the largest end use market segment accounting for just over 40% of total plastic usage.
- Annually, approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide.
- More than one million bags are used every minute.
- A plastic bag has an average “working life” of 15 minutes.
- Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
What can we do?
St. Michael’s is proud to partner with Clean Ocean Access to educate our community about plastics in our oceans and ways we can take action to create a healthy ocean, here on Aquidneck Island. Under the leadership of science teachers Mimi Carrellas and Lauren Magruder, the 6th grade has begun to research this environmental concern within their science curriculum. They presented these startling facts at the Middle School Monday morning meeting, and will continue to educate the community and offer specific steps that we can all take to do our part in improving the situation.
How can we help?
We are pleased to announce that St. Michael’s has adopted Easton’s Beach (First Beach) and with this comes great responsibility. Staying in line with Clean Ocean’s Access’s vision to create “a healthy ocean that is free of marine debris with water that is safe for all ocean activities and a shoreline that is accessible to the public”, our 6th graders will be doing beach cleanups once a month. They will collect trash and analyze data based on their findings. Stay tuned for more action steps in this very important initiative!
How it Began
This collaboration began with Newport Film’s screening of A Plastic Ocean at the Newport Casino at the International Tennis Hall of Fame. Our faculty, students, and families were dismayed by the information in the documentary but then inspired to take action in our community. See the trailer for this powerful film, which is now available on iTunes.