EFOE octopus at Brentford Festival of Waste

 

On 29th July, EFoE joined Brentford Recycling Action Group in Brentford Market Place to host an anti-plastic pollution stall at the Festival of Waste organised by local charity 'The Cathja Barge Project'. 

 

Despite threatening gusts of high wind and intermittent rain, which meant that there were not many crowds, the octopus caused a sensation and we succeeded in collecting two and a half pages of signatures for Friends of the Earth’s petition asking for urgent government action to reduce manufacturers’ and retailers’ production of plastic waste. We were kept busy most of the time talking to people about ways in which we can cut down use of plastic.

One visitor to our stand, brought a plastic bag containing the remains of all the teabags he'd previously composted...a horrible mass of fibrous plastic.It is generally not realized that the more tea you drink in plastic tea bags ( let alone plastic cups ) the more chemicals you imbibe..particularly if you steep twice.

 

Councillor Guy Lambert explained that in Hounslow, our recyclable plastic is exported to the Philippines, the rest sent to Avonmouth for incineration which generates harvested energy. He was interested to learn about the contamination of water from the microfibres released into our waste water when we wash our synthetic clothing, and how these fibres ultimately end up in our drinking water.It is possible to purchase a wash bag to encapsulate synthetic clothing within the washing machine and prevent fibres from entering water systems but this relies on individuals and is not inexpensively available yet. Most people were seriously shocked at the implications of this pollution and indeed of all plastic pollution in general and keen for further urgent action from those in office.