Beach Cleanup Project

Clean the world, save the world.

Introduction

On the 16th of January 2015, Year 8 went to the Discovery North Plaza Beach (Sam Pak Wan) to analyse and clean all of the macro and micro trash (Macro trash is bigger than 1cm, micro trash is 1cm or smaller). A company called Plastic Free Seas gave a speech on how plastic affects the sea and land animals. We were given the speech because Plastic Free Seas wanted to raise awareness on how much it affects the sea and land animals, and even us.


The beach was divided into 8 equal section. One for each humanities class. In all sections there were 1m² quadrangle squares where the micro particles were collected. The class was divided into 3 groups. One was collecting macro trash, one was collecting micro trash and one was organising and counting all of the trash. The macro groups placed all of the trash in a bin bag. The counters tallied all of it, as it would be easier to track with a tally chart. We also used a picture sheet to identify which rubbish was which type. The people in the 1m² quadrangle had to sieve out sand to find micro particles. In total 55 kg of rubbish was collected. However, only 2.5 kg of it was recyclable.


In this report I am going to present the amount of macro and micro rubbish in graphs, explain where it came form and discuss the effects it has on the environment. I am also going to come up with some solutions to the problem of plastic in the sea.

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Data Analysis - Macro

The plastic that was most collected was the Plastic Packaging, at 301 particles. Second was polystyrene which had just 7 particles less. The least acquired was the metal particles, at 4 particles.


Most waste was from China, Taiwan, and other places which are close to HK. as some of the waste wasn't sold in HK, such as the Nicholas bottle cap that was showed to us in the speech. Since Hong Kong is an island, there are many beaches. Rubbish from all around the world could float into them.


Some people don't know where plastic rubbish goes. They think it is being recycled. However, only a small quantity of all plastic that we use can be recycled. Some things, such as plastic bags, can fly away from the rubbish cans, which could lead to the ocean. Also, some people just use the beach as a huge garbage can.


When such big plastic particles are being chucked on the beach or in the ocean, small creatures such as a baby turtle or a fish can get stuck in them and will have to grow around them, leading to deformities. Or even some huge creatures, like whales, might eat them, causing them to be poisoned by the toxic waste that is in plastic.

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Pie Chart
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Data Analysis - Micro

When it comes to quantity, the plastic pellets dominate, with 473 particles. In second, by a far margin, are the polystyrene, with 316 particles. The least acquired are the metal particles, with only 1 particle.


Most of the micro particle waste comes from the factories waste tunnel, which leads to the sea. It also comes from some broken up pieces of plastic, which have disintegrated into little particles. Most of these particles are from HK or China.


After a while, big macro garbage, disintegrates into smaller pieces, making it micro garbage. It mostly comes from factories and companies.


Many fish and other sea animals are eating these small, toxic micro trash. Other animals and birds, such as seagulls and seals, are eating these toxicated fish. Even humans are eating these fish. We have a chance of getting killed by the toxins inside the plastic, that is inside the fish.