Every minute, every single day, the equivalent of a truckload of plastic enters our oceans. In the name of profit and convenience, corporations are literally choking our planet with a substance that does not just “go away” when we toss it into a bin. Since the 1950s, some 8.3bn tons of plastic have been produced worldwide, and to date, only 9% of that has been recycled. Our oceans bear the brunt of our plastics epidemic – up to 12.7m tons of plastic end up in them every year.
In July 2018, a number of students from Emmanuel College travelled to Indonesia where they witnessed first-hand the unprecedented scale of environmental destruction caused by single use plastics. In the space of an hour, students collected over 90kg of plastic waste from a short stretch of coastline, with more waste being washed up every minute. To read more about this inspirational trip use this link to The ET(see page 2 for further details).
Inspired by their peers’ experiences, economists from Emmanuel College have partnered with the North East Initiative on Business Ethics (NIBE), to put in place a plan to draw out and harness the ideas of students to ensure that the North East remains a responsible and ethical business region in the future.
Emmanuel College students have organized an inter-school debate, calendared for 26th February 2019 (6 – 8pm), and involving local schools; St.Bede’s of Durham, Gosforth Academy, and Harton Academy. Visiting Professors from The Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University, and Durham University Business School, will form part of the judging panel. With business mentors from Brewin Dolphin, Virgin Money, and SABIC assigned to support each team, it promises to be an interesting and thought-provoking event.
Our goal is to encourage local businesses and communities to take action. This requires a moment to think about the severity of the issue. We look forward to your support and thank you in advance for helping us to give everyone a behavioural nudge in the right direction!