SOUTHWEST HARBOR — Mount Desert Island High School freshmen Caroline Musson, Logan Wilbur, Charlotte Partin, and Ella Izenour are set to present their research about plastic pollution and screen a condensed version of the documentary “A Plastic Ocean” at four events in October. The students will also speak about a citizen initiative underway in all four MDI towns to ban single-use plastic bags and polystyrene (a.k.a. styrofoam).
The gatherings are set for Saturday, Oct. 13 at 2 p.m. at Reel Pizza; Tuesday, Oct. 16 at 5:30 p.m. at the Jesup Memorial Library and Wednesday, Oct. 17 at 5:30 p.m. at the Southwest Harbor Public Library.
Last year, the then-eighth graders Pemetic Elementary did research about the effects of plastic waste on the environment and public health and became impassioned advocates for the elimination of single use plastic bags.
They presented their research to the Southwest Harbor Town Meeting in May and subsequently presented to the select boards in Mount Desert and Tremont and the town council in Bar Harbor.
“A Plastic Ocean documents the newest science, proving how plastics, once they enter the oceans, break up into small particulates that enter the food chain where they attract toxins like a magnet,” a statement from the producers reads. “These toxins are stored in seafood’s fatty tissues, and eventually consumed by us. Producer Jo Ruxton joined an expedition to the so-called Great Pacific Garbage Patch in the North Pacific Gyre, 1500 miles off the coast of San Francisco, to ascertain its impact. When the expedition discovered free-floating microplastics instead of an anticipated solid mass that could be contained, Jo knew she had to begin the film that would become A Plastic Ocean.”
A Climate to Thrive is hosting the events, along with the students, the Town of Mount Desert’s Sustainability Committee and the Citizens Initiative for Reducing Plastics on MDI.