We are a group of high school students representing the sustainability track of the Bermuda Youth Climate Summit. With a strong focus on environmental activism, and policy change, we strongly believe that giving young people the platform to spearhead discussions about climate action is extremely beneficial. After having the opportunity to collaborate with like– minded students, we have created goals and pilot projects in hope to create change within our community. Increasing the awareness and availability of sustainable alternatives is the core of these projects, and we want to pass our knowledge on to other students to help nurture the next generation of climate activists.
Having engaged in many field opportunities and outreach opportunities, we have heard from experts in the climate activism and sustainability fields on how to effect change. These exchanges have been integral to the planning and execution of these projects, and we are so grateful for these opportunities. We are also incredibly thankful to BUEI for hosting this amazing event, and hope that it continues for years to come, providing a platform for like minded youth to collaborate and discuss issues of global significance.
What Do We Want to Fix?
As we are all painfully aware, plastics have detrimental effects, not just for the environment, but for us as humans too. Bermuda is certainly not immune to these issues, and contributes to the global plastic waste issue.
Why are plastics so bad?
Humans consume microplastics daily and this is known to cause health issues. Microplastic can travel as tiny filaments in the air for thousands of miles and have been found in some of the most remote parts of the world. In a recent exchange with BIOS experts, we learned how these microplastics travel from the East coast of the USA to Bermuda and are frequently collected in samples at Tudor Hill Marine-Atmospheric Observatory. According to the World Economic Forum, around 32% of all plastic packaging produced enters the ocean each year. This is the equivalent of pouring one garbage truck of plastic into the ocean every minute. Plastic enters our environment in multiple ways and it is essential to reduce the use of single use plastic where possible.
What Do We Plan to Do?
Our project aims to increase awareness and availability of sustainable alternatives to plastic within our community by first focusing on Bermudian schools. This will start in a limited number of schools, with a particular focus on reducing plastic in hot lunches. We have also worked with local businesses to request discounts on alternatives to single use plastics. This project includes many different pilot schemes that will ensure maximum outreach and impact within our community.
What Can You Do?
You can consider purchasing renewable supplies (e.g. water bottle etc.) that reduce the need for single use plastic. Think about products that are non-toxic, durable and dishwasher friendly. You can also go check out the discounts available at The Chef store and People’s Pharmacy.
How Can You Avail of These Discounts?
The discounts vary depending on the products but will be made available for a limited time only at the end of August and start of September. The two businesses offering discounts on sustainable lunch supplies are: The Chef Shop which has a fantastic range of children lunch boxes, snazzy water bottles, cutlery sets and lots more. Please go visit the Chef Shop at 44 Par-La-Ville Rd, Hamilton, Bermuda and discover what is available. The second generous vendor is People’s Pharmacy who will offer discounts on sustainable lunch supplies via their online store. Please visit their webpage for more details https://peoples.bm.
Please tag us on social media, @YCSBDA and @Sustainability_YCS with a picture of your sustainable school supply purchases by using the hashtags #ycsbda #sustainability_ycs.
We very much appreciate the support of these local establishments and our partner Beyond Plastic Bermuda and their efforts to provide alternatives to single use plastics.