Many believe that PLASTIC Cup is only one week in the summer and during the rest of the year every Plastic Pirate is waiting impatiently for the next summer. With this article, we would like to show that this is not true and at the same time say thank you to the close-knit and anytime ready volunteers. Let it be figuring out awareness raising game, dusty storeroom cleaning or picking plastic bottles in cold (we mean really cold, around 10°C) water, we can always count on them.
On the second weekend of September, our enthusiastic volunteers headed to Verőce where PLASTIC Cup and InGreen magazine participated with a joint booth on the first Hiker Festival by the invitation of the Hungarian Hiker Association. Apart from the usual pieces including the PLASTIC Cup exhibition, and slippers, rubber ducks and artificial leg from Tisza, this time, thanks for the creative Plastic Pirates, we awaited the visitors with plenty of awareness raising games, bottle pick-ups and water cannons. Discovering the situation of the nearby creek, we even organized a spontaneous clean-up action – as a real Plastic Pirate always has bag at hand! In the evening, we held photo report about this year’s PLASTIC Cup, then after the night party we waited again for visitors at the booth, luckily there was not a lack of them.
At the festival we experienced the interest and openness of the younger generation, plus the energy used for cleaning the creek valley without even considering that their shoes went wet. These prompted us to expand the PLASTIC Cup exhibition content with more programmes and games targeting the elementary school generation, introducing the bad environmental status and its negative consequences coming from our wasteful consumption. During this fall, we have already presented PLASTIC Cup in two schools.
One advantage of the PLASTIC Cup is that it confronts very intensively and deeply the, mostly urban, people living decoupled from nature with the negative environmental impacts of consumer society that cannot be seen from comfortable homes. Sadly, we could live this feeling again along the river Bodrog, a tributary of Tisza. More and more people should see the situation in the floodplain of rivers Bodrog and Tisza where areas polluted by 1 tonnes of plastic per hectare are to be found, in order to cut back the lavishing consumption and reconsider using single use plastic items
Start of October, due to the kind offer of Green Circle, volunteers of PLASTIC Cup could spend a weekend at the water base in Bodrogolaszi. The dough from the oven, wine tasting, open fire bowl food and cheer are not enough for a Plastic Pirate and cannot rest without clean-up actions. Therefore, on Saturday we canoed the 6 km distance between Bodrogolaszi and Sárospatak, and after filled up in the picturesque environment and restaurant opposite to the fortress of Sárospatak (where definitely got surprised seeing the muddy guests in rubber boots), backwards to downstream with random landings in the floodplain we faced huge areas of plastic mines without any preliminary monitoring. After the 15 pirates filled the canoes with full bags of litter, sheets of polystyrol and a house of a fridge, still lots of litter were left in the floodplain, thus we are already planning the return.
Scientific and awareness raising programs of PLASTIC Cup, autumn 2018
This fall is not short in scientific programs and international networking either, start of October PLASTIC Cup was present in the waste expo in Kyiv, Ukraine to get informed about the implementation of the Ukrainian waste strategy. On 10th of October, in the Knowledge Centre of Wessling Hungary, Budapest we presented on the microplastic conference of the company as partner of their microplastic project. It was a good and moving feeling to see that every speaker mentioned PLASTIC Cup in their own presentations, and many expressed gratitude there for the initiative.
The PLASTIC Cup will be present at the next future events where you can meet the Plastic Pirates and experts:
- 18-19 October 2018, third roundtable and brainstorming for the clean Tisza, Visk, Ukraine
- 28 October 2018, Green Planet Festival (PLASTIC Cup exhibition and presentation by Gary Hankó, PLASTIC Professor), Budapest
- 10 November 2018, Geological Festival (PLASTIC Cup exhibition and movies), Budapest
- November 2018, monitoring and filming at Transcarpathia, the main source area for the waste tsunami
Of course, we have already started preparing the PLASTIC Cup of next year, soon we will be back with details and surprises! So far, we will keep you informed and ready for inquiries for appearances as shown above.