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Bywaters has teamed up with Sky Ocean Rescue to tour Plasticus, a 10m long whale made out of single-use plastic, around the UK – raising awareness of the growing problem of ocean plastic pollution.

‘Plasticus’: The Whale Made from Bywaters Plastic

As part of our company commitment to reduce the amount of plastic in the ocean, Bywaters has contributed enough recovered plastic to make the 10 metre-long whale ‘Plasticus’ in partnership with Sky Ocean Rescue.

The whale has recently visited our state-of-the-art Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) in Bow, where much of the plastic used in its creation was recovered – the rest being from beach cleans carried out in partnership with Bywaters’ clients.

Raising Awareness of Ocean Plastic Pollution

Siận Glover, Bywaters’ Head of Social Enterprise, is championing Bywaters’ focus on plastic reduction and diverting plastics from rivers and the ocean because she, like all of us at Bywaters, wants to play a part in stopping ocean pollution. Explaining Plasticus’ visit to our Bow facility, she said:

“Seeing how many plastic bags are used and dumped, plastic bottles being thrown away and coffee cups with plastic linings being consumed makes me very conscious of our throw away lifestyle.

“As a passionate animal lover and vegetarian, when I saw how plastic debris is killing whales and marine life, it made me determined to use my position in Bywaters to make a change – not just for me and my family but for my daughter’s generation.

“When Sky News contacted us about wanting to build a huge whale from recovered plastic to highlight the issue I immediately told them I wanted Bywaters to be involved – so we contributed the plastics from beach cleans in the south east for the sculpture”

Plasticus Tours the UK

The whale, named Plasticus by the public, weighs 250kg – representing the amount of plastic that enters our oceans every second.

This summer, Plasticus travelled along the UK coast line arriving back at SKY HQ where Bywaters’ Head of Sustainability, Edward van Reenen, was interviewed about how to avoid using plastic bags and bottles just once. You can find the interview here.

Bywaters Will Continue to Fight Ocean Plastics

Bywaters works with customers and staff to educate them about importance of recycling and reusing waste, and how to reduce the amount of single use plastics we use in our lives.

Our facility in Bow separates out five types of plastic from any dry mixed recycling waste that arrives, repurposing around 75 million bottles and nearly 184 million plastic bags a year.

Reflecting on Plasticus’ success, Siận Glover concluded:

“Plasticus was a clever way of showing people what the consequence of throwing plastic bottles into the river or the sea looks like and we’re delighted to be welcoming him here to Bow.

“We’re now keen to explore with Sky News how we can further help them in getting the message out there.”


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