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Working in partnership with 18 organisations from across France and England, Preventing Plastic Pollution seeks to understand and reduce the impacts of plastic pollution in the marine environment. By looking at the catchment from source to sea, the project will identify and target hotspots for plastic, embed behaviour change in local communities and businesses, and implement effective solutions and alternatives.  


The €14m Preventing Plastic Pollution project was approved by the Interreg France (Channel) England Programme, which has committed €9.9m in funding through the European Regional Development Fund.  The project will work across seven pilot sites: Brest Harbour, Bay of Douarnenez, Bay of Veys, Poole Harbour, and the Medway, Tamar, and Great Ouse estuaries.  The information gathered from research in these areas will allow the cross-Channel partnerships to tackle some of the four million tonnes of plastic waste that enter the sea via rivers every year.

My role working with Prof Richard Thompson and his team at The Marine Institute at Plymouth University is developing as data has started to be gathered from both the English and French rivers and estuaries. My key aim is to explore the data and microplastic waste recovered from specific locations and to translate this into new images. 


This first swirling flatlay has been created from data gathered using a Seabin that was positioned in the Plymouth Sound for a number of months. The highest proportion of objects collected was polystyrene pieces, followed by bio beads - the smallest amount of a waste type found was plastic bags. There were 8 other types of waste saved from the water and the majority was from domestic sources. 

This collaboration began late 2019 to foster the connection between art and science with an aim to explore how we can re-represent scientific data and information into a new form which engages people and raises awareness of plastic borne waste in our global water systems.


The data that I used to create this flat lay microplastic piece came from Dr Freija Mendrik ( @freija.marine ) and was researched as part of her PhD studies at The Energy and Environment Institute at Hull University. It was gathered on the Mekong River in Thailand at 3 different locations and this scicomm image illustrates the flux between highest recording of microplastics (white pieces) and lowest (pink pieces) during her research period. 

In partnership with The Waterline Summit 2020, the Energy and Environment Institute and the Doctoral College at the University of Hull and Pint of Science, a virtual exhibition was created called Earth 2050 to showcase work highlighting the environmental issues which we will face in the next 30 years. This included potential threats to the environment /civilisation, changes currently happening and technology which might contribute to shaping our future. 


January 2020 – Group show called ‘Ocean’ at the Jupiter Gallery, Newlyn that was coordinated by Plastic Free Penzance featuring regional artists working to raise awareness of plastic pollution in our seas. As part of the month-long exhibition, educational events and film nights, I ran microplastic workshops for children to discuss big questions around domestic waste being found on local beaches, who’s responsibility it was to clean it up and how they felt about what they saw changing in their own environments. It was also an opportunity for accompanying adults, parents & children to handle the micro-plastic pieces I have collected and to reflect on what objects they used in their own daily lives.

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