By Jane Patton
In a recent investigative series, CNN International took an in-depth look at the alarming—and increasing—extinction rate of animal species worldwide, dubbed The Vanishing: Earth’s sixth era of extinction. Among five other species facing eradication from the planet, CNN’s team highlighted the albatrosses of the Midway Atoll and other Pacific islands who are, in mass numbers, choking to death on the staggering amount of plastic pollution in the oceans.
At the conclusion of this series, CNN released a call to action: conserve more, consume less, and directly fund organizations worldwide who are offering real solutions to prevent these potential extinctions. Plastic Pollution Coalition was honored to be one of the six organizations identified as leading the charge against single-use plastic and our dependence on fossil fuels.
But PPC would not exist without the everyday, on-the-ground work done by its member organizations. We only achieve the goals we set for ourselves to reduce our consumption, to support and pass legislation to regulate disposable plastic, and to change the narrative about single-use plastic so people stop using it and industry stops making it, through the investment and support of our members.
PPC has over 500 members in more than 60 countries across 6 continents. Each of them is doing work locally and globally to reduce our dependence on single-use plastic and therefore on fossil fuels. Each of them is worthy of your support.
Below are six organizations, among those 500+, who are taking the lead in their communities to bring plastic-free solutions to neighbors, local governments, and ultimately, the planet. We hope their accomplishments will inspire you—as they have us—to support their efforts in whatever ways you can.
Kristal Ambrose has been leading citizen science initiatives in the Bahamas since 2013, teaching an entire generation of young people to take charge of their future. Students are developing an understanding of the impacts of plastic pollution in the ocean and turning knowledge into action by working with local leaders to change waste policy.
Melati and Isabel are two teenagers on a mission: rid Bali of single-use plastic bags. They started with their own passion and grew that into an international network of young volunteers, petitioning for and achieving change. Be sure to watch their talk at TEDGlobal>London on how they learned to lead a movement to say goodbye, once and for all, to plastic bags.
CTC works on the ground in Indonesia. With intense training programs, dedicated learning networks, and a brand new Center for Marine Conservation, they’re raising awareness of the dangers faced by the coral reefs, and arming capable marine managers with real tools to prevent the destruction of remaining coral from pollution, overfishing, and climate change.
JUCCEE creates space for collaboration between scientists and leaders to catalyze systemic change in sustainable urbanization, sustainable industry, and sustainable consumption. They’re working to change the way China creates and uses energy, aiming to improve the health outcomes of all Chinese people—and by extension, citizens everywhere.
Do you like to knock on strangers’ doors? TCE staffers do. As the largest environmental group in Texas organizing support through door-to-door canvassing, they’re achieving victories against plastic pollution statewide: protecting curbside recycling, adopting plastic bag fees or bans, and ardently supporting city zero waste resolutions, just to name a few.
WISE has a simple vision: a safe and just environment for all people in Nigeria and worldwide. Through programs dedicated to promoting community action for responsible municipal waste management and hygiene, WISE is empowering women to advocate for safe drinking water and clean communities, free from plastic pollution.