Monthly Archives: October 2010

The Perils of Plastic

This feels a bit like confession: “forgive me readers for I have sinned; it has been over 2 months since my last post.” So much for my weekly installments.  . .

Grant and I got pretty wrapped up in our cycle trip across the country this summer, and I got preoccupied with organizing community screenings of our film, but there’s no excuse really.

So to get back on track, I want to jump in with what we did last weekend. Last weekend, we attended a heartfelt presentation by Jan Vozenilek about the growing problem with plastics in our oceans and its effect on Midway Island’s albatross.

Although we have known about these issues for a couple years, we were still both overcome with emotion; seeing Jan’s latest powerful images from Midway made it feel as if we were hearing it for the first time. In addition to sharing short films and images, Jan brought a collection of plastic collected from inside the stomachs of dead baby birds. I was astounded by how many lighters and toothbrushes there were in the pile, and it really hit home that this plastic was our plastic: stuff that we all use everyday is killing marine wildlife.

To balance all that doom and gloom, Jan shared some positive stories such as the girl in Penticton who campaigned to get her highschool to give up plastic waterbottles (and achieved success in only one year!) and how the videos his team took on Midway have reached thousands of people around the globe. If you ever get a chance to see Jan speak, I highly recommend it, but in the meantime, please visit

In the photo left to right… Joe Schweers (filmmaker), Jan Vozenilek (filmmaker), Grant, Jen, Taina (Plastic Manners – who is living plastic free for 2010!)



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