Nissan's toughest pickup has turned volunteer in a new film to mark World Oceans Day 2018 and celebrate UK community heroes tackling beach plastic pollution. A Cornish dad and daughter team's plea for help with their local Beach Guardian project, inspired Nissan to volunteer its toughest pickup to help clear rubbish from some of Cornwall's remotest beaches.
Beach Guardian is the brainchild of Emily Stevenson (21), a marine biology student, and her father Rob (50). The pair have been clearing waste from beaches in Cornwall for 10 years. They decided to set up the community group after realising the plastic problem was getting worse.
They amassed an army of local volunteers to help, but they were struggling to reach remote locations and remove bulky rubbish with their family car, so they posted a request for help on social media. Nissan responded by volunteering the new Navara Off Roader AT32, which can be fitted with a snorkel and is designed for the most extreme landscapes.
It helped Beach Guardian take on their most challenging beach plastic clean up to date, reaching over rocky terrain and removing debris like plastic nets that had been deeply embedded in the sand for more than two years. More than eight million tonnes of plastic end up in the world's oceans every year with devastating consequences for marine wildlife, fisheries and tourism.
During its recent Great British Beach Clean Up, the Marine Conservation Society found 718 pieces of litter for very 100 metre stretch of UK beach surveyed. Alongside the film, Nissan is inviting community groups across Europe to nominate remote and tough to reach beaches or other locations where the Navara could help them clear plastic waste.
And it is also encouraging its European employees to use its own volunteering program, Days for Change, to join local beach cleaning projects where appropriate. In the UK, members of the public or community groups who want to highlight an area of beach that needs clearing of plastic waste should use the free What3Words photo app to send an image of the beach plastic they've found along with its precise location to Nissan GB.
What3Words is a unique global addressing platform that allocates every 3m x 3m location with a simple three word address. This address corresponds to a GPS location, thus allowing a specific spot on a beach to be identified and easily shared - even along the most rugged and remote coastlines.
Rob Stevenson said 'The beaches people visit - where they enjoy ice creams and watch their kids build sandcastles - are just one view of the issue. There are many more remote and unseen parts of the coastline that volunteers either struggle to reach, or need something to move larger items'.
'Normally we're using just our own family cars or DIY tools. Without help from Nissan and the Navara Off Roader AT32, we could never have released the old nets buried in the sand dunes for years'. The film is set along a stretch of Cornwall's rugged and picturesque coastline. Like many beaches around the UK these are also affected by the growing problem of plastic waste.
Ken Ramirez, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Nissan Europe, said 'The Navara Off Roader AT32 is the perfect partner for Beach Guardian. Designed to take on the most challenging conditions like wet sand and rocks, and with a snorkel that allows it to better drive through water, it's ideal to support their work on remote beaches'.
He added, 'Community heroes like Emily and Rob, who give their own time to try to make a difference, are an inspiration to us all'.
By Emily and Rob Stevenson, Beach Guardian:
'The highest point on a beach where the tide reaches is called the strandline. This is where the waves leave behind items such as seaweed, dead plants, dead animals and, unfortunately, plastics. Several strandlines can occur on every beach due to changes in the height of the tides. When you are doing a beach clean, you do so at your own risk so stay safe. Be careful of slippery, seaweed covered rocks. Supervise children and make sure they don't pick up sharp items, animal faeces or dead animals. Make sure children do not go to the water's edge or climb on cliffs. Always plan an escape route if you are working under cliffs and be wary of rock falls. Make sure someone knows where you are going and what time you plan to be back. Be award of the tide and don't allow yourself to get cut off. Wear protective gloves or use a litter picker. If you can't, wash your hands afterwards and take hand sanitiser with you. Old needles must be handles carefully and disposed of properly. A doctor's surgery or hospital is the best place. Do not pick up anything organic as it's important for the local wildlife. For example, seaweed on the beach is a habitat for small invertebrates. If you find a sea bird or marine mammal in peril please report it. Please dispose of anything you collect through local recycling facilities. Consider how it might be used to educate and inspire younger people. We are also responsible for our use of plastics and the care of our beaches'.