What is Paddle for Plastics?

Fathoms Free are pleased to announce our most recent project initiative for 2016. We are undergoing trials in partnership with FatYak Kayaks to produce Kayaks and Bodyboards made from Ocean Plastics!

Not only will these hopefully be for sale in the not-too-distant future, but the Kayaks will also be used by us to remove ocean plastics. They will enable our volunteers to reach the otherwise inaccessible coves for Beach Cleans, surveying and Diving for Debris. Whilst offering us the means of recycling the plastics we gather, most of which presently end up in landfill.

FatYak, a UK South West-based Kayak manufacturer, have a history of supporting local community work. Although currently their products do not contain any recycled materials, they are committed to working with us to pioneer new ways of protecting our oceans. The way we view Ocean Plastic needs to change; by utilising it as a resource which feeds back into a circular economy model, we start to see its true value. This, in turn, will support our grassroots initiative to help clean our seas and offers a new way of recycling marine plastics.

If you would like more information on how you can help – by adding your beach clean ocean plastics to the mix, please get in touch via the ContactUs link at the bottom of this page.

What we need is MDPE and HDPE plastic; the recycling symbol is 2. Please see the picture, for common examples of this. These include: Many types of bottles, generally the thicker types, which would be used for cleaning products or engine oil, bottle tops, milk bottles, fish trays (boxes) and oil drums. Whilst we are still getting our infrastructure established, we can only offer the ability to recycle plastics which are clean, whole, with no paper/card cap inserts or labels. A bit frustrating I know, as a lot of what we all find is plastic fragments.

At present though, due to the diversity of the many types of plastics, their different properties and difficulty in identifying, please only give us plastics you are sure are the type we need. Otherwise, our recyclers may consider any other types of plastics in the mix as contaminants and reject the whole batch. Hopefully, as we get more established we will be able to offer the ability to recycle more types of Ocean Plastics with us, but this is a good start.

We have a drop off point in Mid Cornwall.

Update: 01/05/2016

We are now in the proud possession of the kayak and bodyboard prototypes and we think they look absolutely great! Watch this space for more information as these caused quite a stir showing them off at Looe Festival of the Sea on the 1st May.