Salem, Oregon—Thursday, March 14 will be officially proclaimed “Rise Above Plastic Pollution Day” at the Oregon State Capitol by Governor Kate Brown.
The event—co-hosted by the Oregon Coast Aquarium, Surfrider Foundation Oregon, SOLVE, Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition, and Environment Oregon—aims to raise awareness and inspire action to address the global plastic pollution crisis.
Each organization will lead a Plastic Education Station to teach students, legislators and the public about plastic pollution and what Oregonians are doing about it.
From 10 AM to 2 PM, students from schools throughout Oregon will tour the Plastics Education Stations at the Capitol and meet with state legislators to discuss plastic pollution. From 2 PM to 5 PM, the stations will open to legislators and the general public.
Additionally, at 1 PM, both the House Committee on Energy and Environment and the Senate Committee on Environment and Natural Resources will host a panel of experts entitled, “Marine Plastic Pollution Health and Policy.”
Visitors and legislators will also have an opportunity to take a pledge to reduce their use of single-use plastics.
“Aquarium staff, volunteers, doctoral students and a ‘plastic bag monster’ will present at our station about the effects of plastic on Oregon coast wildlife and ecosystems,” said Kerry Carlin-Morgan, PhD, Oregon Coast Aquarium Director of Education and Volunteer Services. “Our youth volunteers will be there to show how they’re testing different methods for cleaning microplastics off of the beach.”
The Rise Above Plastics campaign is a national initiative to reduce the impacts of plastics in the ocean by raising awareness about the harmful effects of plastic pollution and by advocating for a reduction of single-use plastics.
The campaign comes to the Oregon State Capitol via the statewide Oregon Marine Debris Action Plan, a collaborative effort between state and federal agencies, tribes, industry, academics and non-governmental organizations. The Action Plan focuses on strategies to prevent, research and remove marine debris in Oregon. It is funded by the Marine Debris Program of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
“With the growing awareness of the impacts of plastic pollution, the current recycling crisis we’re facing, and the grassroots efforts to stop plastic pollution at the source, Rise Above Plastic Pollution Day at the Capitol is at the right time to get Oregonians involved with the fight to protect our environment and way of life,” said Briana Goodwin, Surfrider Foundation Oregon Field Manager.
If you are interested in volunteering for Rise Above Plastics Day, you can sign up at bit.ly/Oregon_RAP_Day.
The Oregon Coast Aquarium creates unique and engaging experiences that connect you to the Oregon Coast and inspire ocean conservation. An accredited Association of Zoos & Aquariums institution, this 501(c)3 non-profit organization is ranked as one of the top 10 aquariums in the U.S. Visit us at 2820 S.E. Ferry Slip Rd., Newport, OR. www.aquarium.org, 541-867-3474. Follow us on Facebook.com/OregonCoastAquarium, or Twitter.com/OrCoastAquarium for the latest updates.