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The creative way this uni is tackling plastic pollution abroad

Words by Abi Scaife

The University of Portsmouth has come up with an innovative way to limit plastic pollution – and we're totally on board.

Tell me more.

Plastic pollution is a huge problem all over the world, particularly in middle to lower-income countries. While higher-income countries generate more plastic waste, it is generally better managed. This means that the plastic that ends up in rivers and oceans is more often from lower-income countries, that have not implemented effective waste management.

So what is the University of Portsmouth doing, then?

They have come together with partners in the informal slum settlements of Mukuru, Nairobi, Kenya and Sylhet City, Bangladesh, to help educate people about how to recycle and dispose of waste properly – through creativity!

Okay, what do creativity and recycling have to do with one another?

Revolution Plastics, part of the University of Portsmouth, has decided recycling isn’t the most interesting of topics, and one of the best ways to engage people with topics they aren’t interested in is through creativity.

Not only that, but creative methods such as using illustrations are often more accessible for people than a leaflet full of information.

Right, that makes sense. So, what are they doing?

The uni has teamed up with a bunch of grassroots creatives, like actors, musicians and artists to spread the message in a number of different ways. Murals have been painted in Mukuru, and in Mukuru and Sylhet performers have engaged in street theatre to spark discussions, as well as informing, the people who watch.

Perhaps the best part is the song; the University of Portsmouth had musicians come together to create songs and music video about recycling in local dialects - one of which is included here. Trust us, it is INCREDIBLY catchy!

This article aligns with the UN SDG Climate Action.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs