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Fri, 12 Jun



Highland Ocean Plastics Webinar 2020

A free webinar event exploring projects tackling plastic pollution, in coastal communities, from a highland perspective.

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Highland Ocean Plastics Webinar 2020
Highland Ocean Plastics Webinar 2020

Time & Location

12 Jun 2020, 19:00


About the Event


In 2020 it is estimated that there is now a colossal 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in our seas and 46,000 pieces in every square mile of ocean, with this number expanding daily. There is no ‘Planet B’ for our ocean wildlife, and our coastal communities, with 97% of the world’s water held by the ocean.

We rely on our oceans to regulate our climate, absorb CO2 and they are the number one source for protein for over 1 billion people worldwide. At the rate human beings are polluting the ocean, with around 8 - 14 million tonnes of plastic entering our oceans each year, the damage we are doing to marine life and our ecosystem is becoming near irreparable. The time to act is now. 

The Highland Ocean Plastic Webinar brings together an eclectic group of artists, makers, researchers and conservationists from projects relating to Scotland’s coastal communities, to the Galapagos, for shared insights on trying to look for solutions to how we can reduce the plastic pollution entering our oceans, harming our wildlife, and repair the damage being done to our coastlines.

We can all play our part in the Highlands and across the country to tackle this worldwide problem. 

Join us for a live stream with our panel to learn a bit more about their work, with an opportunity to ask 

questions, and to find out ways you can help. 


Information on our guest speakers and their projects. You can submit questions in advance, and sign up 

to attending the live event HERE: 

Andy MacVicar

Green Hive Workshop, Nairn

Andy will introduce the Green Hive Workshop project and their plans for building partnerships with other organisations to utilise waste streams as a valuable commodity. Transforming waste into craft retail items with volunteer opportunities, that can generate income for a charity organisation. An enduring concept of reuse before industrial recycling or landfill, and the possibilities around reducing costs associated in transport and taxes to landfill, by third sector organisations. 

Green Hive is a well respected small local charity based in Nairn, we have facilitated beach cleans, litter picks, establishing a community orchard, and other participant-led environmental action in the community.

Our Green Hive Enterprise Workshop is an innovative creative community led upcycling centre. We specialise in preventing single-use plastic going to landfill and re-purpose this into beautiful and functional household items. The workshop space and associated machines have been sourced and donated by the local community and provides safe and supervised creative workshop facilities where waste items can be re-discovered, reformed and reimagined, into useful and uniquely designed items for sale. Each item is handmade by one of our volunteers, which include younger people developing employability skills, older people and residents from a local nursing home.

We began in July 2019 with an empty workshop space which volunteers helped design and build the upcycling process and associated machinery production line. Volunteers have gained experience in sourcing and creating a community workshop whilst learning about plastic upcycling, operating tools and machinery, workshop health and safety, identifying and categorising plastic types, brand design and recycling waste plastic into design items for retail.

We have created a wider conversation in the community about local reuse of waste, with the source of our plastics, being donated by the local community at our plastics drop-off zone, creating a circular economy.

Green Hive

Workshop Instagram 

Mandy Barker

Artist & Photographer


Mandy Barker is an international award-winning photographer whose work involving marine plastic debris over the past 10 years has received global recognition.

Working with scientists she aims to raise awareness about plastic pollution in the world's oceans whilst highlighting the harmful effect on marine life and ultimately ourselves. 

Her work has been published in over 40 countries including National Geographic, Time, The Guardian, Vice, Smithsonian, Geo, and New Scientist. She has exhibited globally including the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, and the Science and Technology Park in Hong Kong.

Mandy was invited onboard the Greenpeace Beluga II project as an artist studying the impact of plastics on the ecosystem around the North Coast and Lochs of Scotland in 2017.

Mandy Barker

Joan Darcy & Julien Moreau

Plastic@Bay, Durness

Plastic@Bay was set up with the goal of limiting the impact of plastic pollution on NW Scotland. Our objectives are to remove plastic pollution from our beaches, research innovative ways to recycle and reuse marine plastic, and educate communities about the devastating, long lasting effects of plastic pollution. All the while carrying out primary field research to help better understand how plastic moves through our environment. 

We clean our local beach, Balnakeil Beach weekly, and weigh and survey the plastic pollution we collect. The results are published monthly in the Balnakeil Pollution Report on our website. NW Scotland is unique in that it acts as an accumulation ground for plastic pollution. Along the west coast we have identified hot spots of extreme plastic pollution. Data gathered from our pollution report has been used in a collaboration with Tom Scanlon, MTS-CFD, to create oceanographic simulations to help us better understand the distribution of plastic pollution and how these hot spots form.


In conjunction with our beach cleaning activities we set up Plastic Lab, Scotland's first Ocean Plastic Recycling Workshop. The workshop is built based on the concepts of Precious Plastic. We now make clocks, tiles, coasters, jewelry and construction material from recycled fishing ropes. We also give workshops on recycling Ocean Plastic to Community Groups and schools.


Julien will take you through the work done by Plastic@Bay in the last years, the problems we face concerning plastic pollution locally in terms of volumes of plastic washing ashore, where we think the main stock of plastic is coming from, and our future activities and research including; an interactive map to log plastic pollution in the Highlands, expanding cleaning operations and ‘Reddup’, Beach Clean Festival, Scourie. 


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