Plastic pollution is a real and serious problem. An estimated 8 million metric tons of plastic trash end up in our oceans every year. Exposed to the sun, this plastic disintegrates into smaller pieces, just the right size for millions of fish and other animals to ingest as food. When the fish ends up on our plates, the plastic ends up in our stomachs.
At Gili Lankanfushi, the team has taken a zero-tolerance stance towards the consumption of single-use plastics. For instance, instead of supplying plastic bottled drinking water to guests and hosts, the resort has taken the more innovative approach of using reverse osmosis to turn ocean water into clean drinking water. This four-part process of desalination, filtration, re-mineralisation and bottling into reusable glass bottles means that plastic bottles would never have to be used on the island.
Behind the scenes, the marine biology team led by Sarah Davies is also partnering Parley, an international NGO to recycle plastics both on the island and nearby Himmafushi. On Global Recycling Day 2018, for example, the team circled 12 kilometres around the Maldives to collect waste plastic from the ocean.
From time to time, staff members also volunteer to clean up the beach at Himmafushi. The plastic collected is recycled by Parley as plastic yarn to make clothing and high-performance sportswear for brands like Adidas.
These efforts are all part of the resort’s Social and Environmental Awareness & Sustainability policy, in a bid to save the ocean.
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