I recently attended an event to launch a campaign to make my local town and well known centre for second hand books, Hay-on-Wye, plastic bag free. To emphasise the importance of the campaign the organisers had arranged a showing of the film, Message in the Waves that inspired Rebecca Hosking to transform Modbury in Devon. A room full of people with a common interest watched one of the most moving films I have ever seen and in the darkness we shed our silent tears. When the lights came up there was an air of complete disbelief and a shocked and rather stunned audience filed out from the parish hall. The film highlights the appalling impact that plastic waste has on marine life. Message in the Waves was filmed in Hawaii, a place as close to paradise on earth as you can get, or so you would think. However, the film reveals a different side to Hawaii and the seas around this island nation. A floating mass of everyday cast-offs such as disposable lighters, golf balls, toothbrushes, toys and ink cartridges bob up and down on the surface of the water. To us these items represent an unsightly blot on the landscape, but to marine mammals and birds they mistakenly see a plaything or, still worse, food. We were subjected to harrowing scenes of dead and dying Albatross chicks whose mothers had regurgitated the spoils of western society into the mouths of their young. The birds become so choked up with our rubbish that they feel full and subsequently starve to death. As the mass of carcasses decay on the shorelines, piles of brightly coloured plastic items are slowly revealed leaving macabre and sinister memorials to once beautiful birds.
To watch a trailer you can go to the Message in the Waves website and to see the whole film try and keep an eye out for local showings. If you have ever wondered why we need to reduce our dependence on plastic this is the film to watch. Here at Wiggly Wigglers we work hard to be as green as we can, but there is always room for improvement. If you have any ideas or suggestions we would love to hear from you.