Coca-Cola giving up on reusable bottles in Germany

Until the beginning of this year, American company Coca-Cola was showing good will in Germany by distributing a large part of its beverages in reusable bottles, with a reuse capacity of up to 40 cycles. However, the firm recently decided to make a disappointing change in its policy by turning its back on them and reverting to single-use plastic bottles. With the support of Surfrider Foundation Europe, especially Chapter North Germany, and of the German Federal agency for the Environment, consumers and NGO’s are now mobilizing to put pressure on Coca-Cola.

A Twitter digest of the Monaco Conference

On the 11th and 11th of March, Surfrider foundation Europe, Foundation Albert 2nd of Monaco, Tara expeditions and the Mava foundation held an international conference on plastic in the Mediterranean Sea at the Monaco Yacht Club. While it was streamed live on its dedicated website, Beyond Plastic Med, the conference received live Twitter coverage as well thanks to hashtag #BeyondPlastic, which also allowed the public to interact with speakers. Surfrider gathered the most important tweets in a Storify compilation, making it possible to go through the gist of the debates and make a first assessment of the conference’s results.

ON THE SMURFIT AFFAIR : A FEW WORDS WITH JEAN-VINCENT, KEEPER OF THE COAST

On the 17th of last February, the Appeal court of Bordeaux (France) passed its sentence on the Smurfit affair. After being acquitted in First Instance in 2013, multinational stationery company Smurfit Kappa was eventually declared guilty of civil and criminal infractions for prejudice caused to the environment. In July 2012, one of the cisterns of Smurfit’s factory site in Biganos (Gironde, France) had broken open and widely poured its content, i.e. blackish substances containing (among others) caustic soda, into the surrounding rivers and the Arcachon Bay. These substances were then driven into the ocean via the Salie Wharf, a nearby sewage pipe which was already suspected of discharging noxious liquids around bathing and surfing waters on a regular basis. The incident caused an uproar among surfers and residents who gathered around local surfer and member of Association Michel d’Agata Jean-Vincent Accoce, who turned to Surfrider Foundation Europe and joined its Keepers of the Coast programme. Following our first interview back in 2012, we thought it interesting to ask him for his opinion now the affair is over (you may find a complete summary of it on the Keepers’ website).

2015 Ocean initiatives: 4 main types of litter under the spotlights

From March 19th to 22nd, Surfrider  Foundation Europe will be launching the 20th edition of its best-known mobilization and awareness raising programme : the Ocean Initiatives, a large-scale, free-to-join marine litter collection campaign. This new edition will once again link the collection of litter and the quantification of it with general sensibilization on the issue of marine litter. Indeed Surfrider will be providing organisers with pedagogical tools specifically designed to raise awareness using four emblematic types of litter. Various statistics based, among others, upon the litter collected over the 2014 Ocean Initiatives, have shown that these 4 types of waste are as commonly found on the coastline as in our daily lives. Thus cigarette butts, food packages, cotton swabs and plastic microbeads from cosmetics will be brought forward in the 2015 campaign to highlight this fundamental fact: just like them, the vast majority of the trash that pollutes our oceans comes from the continent.