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Thursday, 22 April 2021 11:54

Earth Day launch of online resource for us all to tackle plastic pollution

To mark Earth Day the Ocean Legacy Foundation have launched EPIC Academy - a free online educational platform providing communities with knowledge regarding ocean plastic pollution, cleanup efforts, and solutions for creating plastic-free environments.

The Ocean Legacy Foundation (OLF) is a Canadian non-profit organisation that develops and implements worldwide plastic pollution emergency response programmes, with the goal to end ocean plastic pollution.

earthday plastic pollution education resource Becky and Plastic mountainEPIC Academy's digital curriculum includes 10 lessons pertaining to ocean plastic pollution, the environmental impact of plastic pollution, and how different communities across the globe can take action managing plastic waste and solving the ocean plastic pollution crisis.

OLF’s goal for EPIC Academy is to provide any individual, business or organisation interested in learning more about ocean plastic pollution with an easily accessible and free resource to start the learning journey; ultimately building a global community working to advance plastic pollution cleanup efforts, evidence-based policy expansion and infrastructure development to better manage plastic resources.


EPIC Academy is available in English, Spanish, and French and each of the 10 online lessons takes approximately 90 minutes to complete. Level 1, beginner lessons 1 – 5, is targeted towards the individual learner and includes special guidance for high school teachers (i.e., classroom guides and assignments) to help them lead their students through the lessons.

earthday plastic pollution education resource Micro Fibres LasquetiLevel 2, advanced lessons 6 -10, is targeted towards individuals and organizations, especially local leaders and waste management and recycling professionals, who are concerned about plastic pollution and want to learn how to take action to stem the flow of plastics into the environment. Once participants have completed each lesson, they receive an EPIC Academy digital badge that can be shared on social media. At the completion of Level 1 and completion of Level 2 they receive an EPIC Academy Certificate of Completion.

“Communities around the world have specific environmental and emergency needs when managing ocean plastic pollution. EPIC Academy can provide essential knowledge regarding plastic pollution and solutions for communities to create plastic-free lands and oceans”, explains Chloé Dubois, President and co-founder of OLF.

“During our cleanup efforts we see single-use disposable plastics, cigarette butts, derelict fishing gear, and polystyrene littered all over the coastlines. Without intervention, global ocean plastics are expected to double by 2035. If practices remain unchanged there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean, by weight, by 2050.

Debris Sorting"OLF believes that every action towards eliminating ocean plastic pollution counts, and EPIC Academy is a step in that direction.”


Plastic debris can be found on every beach in the world and recent studies have found that marine plastic pollution have been ingested by 100 per cent of marine turtles, 59 per cent of whales, 36 per cent of seals and 40 per cent of seabird species examined. Ocean plastic pollution causes the deaths of more than a million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals every single year. Plastics have also been found in drinking water, beer, seafood, table salt, and in the human
body.

EPIC Academy curriculum can be found at https://edu.oceanlegacy.ca