Tim Silverwood – Founder of Take 3
What prompted you to become an environmental activist and founder of Take 3?
As surfers and with a deep love of the beach and ocean, the founders of Take 3 were immensely concerned about the increase of plastic pollution in our oceans. Amanda Marechal and Roberta Dixon-Valk, two friends, developed the concept of Take 3 and after an introduction by a mutual contact the three of us were set to go in 2009!
When people hear of the issue and the impact it has on the environment they often say, “Isn’t that terrible, what a shame.” We thought, instead of people feeling overwhelmed and like they can’t possibly help, let’s inspire them with a simple action that they CAN do to help. We don’t think the action of taking three pieces of rubbish from the beach can solve the problem completely but we do think using Take 3 as an educational campaign to get this issue acknowledged is a great start.
How big of an issue is plastic pollution in Australia?
Scientists report that plastic fragments can now be found on every single beach in the world and in every corner of the ocean at concentrations of up to 40,000 pieces per square kilometre. The majority of plastic in our oceans and on our beaches started its journey on land and was washed down drains, blown into rivers and eventually released into the sea.
That means wherever you see plastic rubbish you can remove that risk to wildlife by just picking it up and putting it in the bin. Plastic is made from oil and natural gas and because it is synthesised using many chemicals it doesn’t biodegrade. That’s why the bulk of the problem in our oceans is what we call ‘micro-plastic’, it’s the small fragments of broken plastic from larger items that unfortunately resemble food for marine life.
Australia has an amazing array of marine biodiversity and a culture and economy reliant on our coastline and oceans. It is imperative that Australia shows global leadership on this issue and takes steps to reduce plastic pollution; this includes banning plastic bags, placing a 10 cent refund on beverage containers to prevent littering and increase recycling, educating the next generation on the issue and finding better alternatives to disposable plastic.
Why should people get involved in Take 3 and the ECO. Clean Beach Initiative?
The ECO. Clean Beach Initiative is a fantastic project that aims to inspire a future generation to care for their local area and the oceans. Every river leads to the sea and the ocean is downhill from everywhere so no matter where people are in Australia they can help by taking 3 items of rubbish and protect our marine life.
By purchasing ECO. Modern Essential products Take 3 will receive a 5c donation to our non-profit organisation, allowing us to continue and expand our educational programs. The ECO. Clean Beach Initiative will educate and inspire a new generation of ECO. Warriors who will in turn lead local action to keep Australia’s coastline clean; how exciting is that!
Claire Mitchell – CEO of ECO. Modern Essentials
Why have you developed the ECO. Clean Beach Initiative?
The idea behind the ECO. Clean Beach Initiative came from my own personal desire to ensure that future generations of Australians can enjoy running and playing on clean white sand and surfing in pristine oceans like I have had all my life.
I’m deeply passionate about our beaches and often don’t go a day without a surf or a beach walk, but I think many of us take this luxury for granted. We think that our beaches and marine life are always going to be there and have therefore stopped treating them with respect.
The ECO. Clean Beach Initiative is about encouraging Australians to get back to nature, to start looking after our most iconic landmarks and to, most of all, start taking pride in our beaches again.
As I always say, you wouldn’t just throw rubbish on the floor of your home, so why do it on your beach?
Why did you choose to partner with Take 3?
I was immediately drawn to Take 3’s dedication to protecting our environment, particularly our beaches and beautiful marine animals.
The founders are all incredibly passionate about raising awareness of the issue of plastic pollution and the impact that it is having on our environment and are really clever in how they’re encouraging Australians to get involved and to care about their beaches.
I also loved that Take 3 has a very similar working ethos to ECO. in that everyone within the organisation is very hands on and involved in all facets of the business and really cares about its future and success.
I really admire what Take 3 have managed to achieve in a very short space of time and am proud to offer them ECO.’s support so that they can continue to do great things for our environment. Hopefully together, we can make a real difference.
What are you hoping to achieve with the ECO. Clean Beach Initiative?
Ultimately, I’m hoping to change behaviours. Both Take 3 and ECO. really want to encourage Australians, who have become very consumer driven, to get outside and get back to nature again.
We want people to care about the future of their beaches and our native wildlife that have become so iconic to Australia.
So it’s not just another fundraising campaign. Our end goal is to have an army of ECO. Warrior’s picking up rubbish and protecting our beaches for many more future generations to come.