Marine litter and ocean plastic waste are huge problems, and can kill wildlife. Many people now volunteer to clean up beaches (or in my case the local river) to help prevent litter reaching the oceans. (You can find out about Marine Conservation Society's Beachwatch project here).
But what can be done with the litter once it has been collected? I don't have statistics for where the litter from beach cleans goes, I'm not sure if anyone has that information. I imagine a lot of it ends up in landfill, but there are more creative things to do with it. Many people have created works of art using marine litter.
I liked this mermaid we met outside a public toilet on Shetland, completely made from waste materials found dumped in the beach and in the sea
and she's surrounded by old toilets which have been used as planters, another innovative example of re-use!
Meanwhile the closest I get to making crafts from marine litter is making things with sea glass and sea pottery. Here is a candle that has been evolving over the past few weeks. At first I surrounded the candle with shards of sea glass, then the candlewax flowed over the glass and solidified creating a sea glass candle.
More genuinely crafty are my sea pottery rings which are on sale in the Crafty Green Poet Etsy shop.
Marine pollution is one of the reasons why many marine species are declining, a topic which is explored in The Islands and the Whales, showing at this year's Edinburgh International Film Festival, which I reviewed here.
For 30 Days Wild.