Women’s Institute members in Seaton Valley have joined a national fight to tackle the growing problem of marine pollution.
They are urging people to help stop the flow of plastics into the seas as part of the national WI End Plastic Soup campaign.
Every time clothes manufactured from man-made fibres are washed, micro fibres are released into the washing water. Too small to be caught in the filters at water treatment plants, they get into the sea and are mistaken by marine creatures for plankton and enter the food chain.
A display at Seaton Sluice Community Centre offers advice on what people can do to help, including reducing the amount of plastic that we use on a day-to-day basis and laundering our clothes differently.
For example, always do a full wash, this makes less friction between the clothes so less fibres are shed; use liquid instead of powder detergent, it means less fibres are loosened in the washing process; and wash at low temperature, which prevents the loosening of fibres.
Other advice from the campaign incldes changing buying habits to target cotton, linen, wool and lyocell instead of polyester-based fabrics; stop using plastic straws; don’t let balloons get into the environment; fill your own re-usable water bottle at home; always use your own cloth bags when you do your shopping; change to fabric nappies; and use wooden matches in place of disposable lighters.
Visit the display at the community centre to find out more.