The shrink-wrap recycling project aims to demonstrate the effectiveness of domestic recycling efforts, circular economies, and prevent plastic film from entering landfills or incinerators – a risk that is increasing with severe reductions in plastic recyclables that are accepted by Chinese manufacturers, which used to handle a large portion of plastic recycling created by US consumers, but has recently changed its policies. Clean Ocean Access has refined a three-phase project that will develop and implement a shrink-wrap recycling program in the State of Rhode Island along with education and outreach to the sailing and marine industry and boating public. The long-term goal of this project is to use the established network of plastic recyclers and manufacturers created from the first phase, to divert a larger quantity of plastic film with potential for a wider range of material composition in the future.
Clean Ocean Access is a not-for-profit organization with a mission of “action today so future generations can enjoy ocean activities.” COA has performed over 650 marine debris removals (coastal cleanups) around Aquidneck Island since September 2006 and removed over 120,000 pounds of small to medium size marine debris. After eight years of success with over 6,000 volunteers, they have shifted their focus towards a comprehensive approach that combines marine debris removal with prevention through education and engagement to eliminate plastic pollution and ocean litter. These programs are just a portion of COA’s long-term portfolio of efforts with a vision of a healthy ocean that is free of marine debris with water that is safe for all ocean activities and a shoreline that is accessible to the public. For more information, please visit www.cleanoceanaccess.org.