Day 29 of my #GBSpringClean was over at Watergate Bay on the North coast with Rob and Emily from Beach Guardian. It was a glorious day and the beach was packed with locals and visitors making the most of the sunny Easter weekend.
Watergate is renowned as being a beach where plastic nurdles and small microplastics can be found deposited in lines by the retreating tide. As there were so many people it was difficult to access too much beach space but we managed to shovel quite a few into the Nurdle Trommel, which is a specialised piece of kit which sieves the sand out and leaves the microplastics behind. Thanks to Nurdle for supplying this and @zlcenergy for sponsoring.
Nurdles are small plastic pellets which, when melted together, are used by industry to make nearly all our plastic products
• Nurdles are lost at sea from ships or at port when being handled
• Nurdles spilt on land at industrial facilities float off down drains and ultimately, out to sea.
Currents and wind disperse them and they are now washing up on beaches across the globe.
Like other plastics in our sea, nurdles …
• attract and concentrate environmental
pollutants like DDT and PCBs to highly toxic levels
• are mistaken for prey by many marine animals and seabirds and enter the food chain
• do not go away – they just fragment into smaller and smaller plastic particles
Nurdles are eaten by Animals, Seabirds and other marine animals often mistake nurdles for food because they look like fish eggs or small crustaceans. Like other plastic they can get trapped in the animal’s stomach causing ulceration, making them feel full and stopping them eating real food.
As we were working across the beach, several people came to enquire what we were doing and to offer help, it was especially lovely to see the children getting involved.
We had a good Nurdle haul today and I can’t think of a nicer spot to do it than Watergate Bay in the sunshine 😃 Keep Britain Tidy 2 Minute Beach Clean Surfers Against Sewage James Mustoe Clean Cornwall Cornish Plastic Pollution Coalition Wayne Dixon