Why Scarlett Photography?
Jessica Hickie from the Environment Agency’s Plastics and Sustainability Team invited me to Watergate bay to meet and photograph her team. Up until now they were using out-of-date imagery, non-relevant stock photographs and were in desperate need for some fresh content for engaging different audiences on the impacts of plastic pollution.
At first glance, North Cornwall’s Watergate Bay is picture-postcard beautiful. Famous for its golden sand beach, consistent surf, great eating and diverse coastal flora and fauna. Once your feet hit the sand though, it is apparent there are problems afoot! The small plastic pieces (microplastic) follow the strandline as far as the eye can see. The team were quick to get to work using their creativity to collect some of the plastic. Within fifteen minutes of collecting the waste, we were able to fill numerous buckets and create the ‘sandcastle’ below!
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Who are the Environment Agency’s Plastics and Sustainability Team?
The Plastics and Sustainability team are based in Devon and Cornwall, but operate Nationally. The team work with a range of people from colleagues within the agency to school children, communities and businesses, with the aim to reduce the amount of plastic pollution reaching our oceans.
What does your team do?
An important part of the team’s work is about engaging different audiences about plastic pollution and inspiring them to make positive behaviour change. No one wants to see plastic in our environment and sadly at times our beaches are overcome with it. Having strong images to share with others who may not have the opportunity to see the problem first hand really helps us capture the interest with people so can they can understand what the problem is.
It was fantastic to have Al with us during our team day as he made everyone feel at ease and had a genuine passion for the environment. Al brought with him not only an impressive array of serious looking kit, but some great ideas which helped us get some devastatingly strong images of plastic pollution on our beaches.