For those of you who don’t know, my desire is to help solve the problems of existing plastic pollution in fragile biospheres. Below you will find the intro My name is Brian and I’m a non traditional, first generation student graduating from Metropolitan State University in Dever, Colorado. on May 16th, 2015. I’ve always had a passion for protecting natural wildlife from human pollution, spending many weekends as a child cleaning up roadways across southern Wisconsin.
As a former insurance agent, I learned about the plastic soup that has been forming in all the oceans of the world. This ‘soup’ consists of plastic that has either been dumped as trash into the ocean, or has been carried into the ocean as a result of our on land littering practices. I was so moved by the results of this trash that I moved to Coloraodo to study water.
My biggest passion in the world is to work on mitigation efforts from the impacts of plastic pollution in our oceans. Annually, over 8 million tonnes of plastic are added to the quantity of pollution in our oceans. This plastic breaks down in the sun and water, leaching plasticizers and other toxins into the water while the plastic breaks into smaller pieces of itself.
These smaller pieces of plastic are interpreted as food for animal life like turtles, fish and birds. In some places this pollution is so bad that by one year old birds can have a 98% chance of being fed plastic by their parents. Scientist generally agree that there are two primary ways to solve this problem: 1) by eliminating sources of pollution while 2) cleaning the beaches and biospheres where the plastics accumulate.
Currently, I am talking to agencies to partner with efforts that focus on long term sustainable solutions that include recycling the plastics that are collected. One of the main difficulties in this is ensuring that there are systems to sort and then process plastics for shipping. One of the reasons this can be difficult is securing relationships to process plastics is quite difficult. One of my main goals to is to work with Plastic to Oil recyclers to provide source stock, or to bring these technologies to the site of the pollution.
I am asking for 10,000 as a start for a simple reason. The round trip cost to get to Guam or American Somoa is about $3,000. To equip myself with the proper gear to live on a beach is about another $2,500 not counting food expenses. Additionally payments for my student loans for 6 months will be an extra $1,000. I’ve calculated that with local relationships; food and other expenses for a 6 month time period, including communications to update my progress will run about $4,000.
If I meet my initial goal, I would like to raise additional funds to buy and ship equipment to allow me to convert the plastics to oil products that can be sold as a commodity. With this machinery, we could establish local employment options – creating an income stream for indigenous communities needing to solve real and local problems. This equipment will run in the 10’s of thousands of dollars, so this is no small task. Of course in order to save our planet from ourselves, we have to start somewhere!
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