The full title of this article from BES Reporter is “Next Stop: Aruba via Bonaire for all-female ocean plastic pollution research crew as part of Circumnavigation.” On November 30, S.V. TravelEdge set sail from Antigua to Aruba via Bonaire with the Red Ensign Group on Leg 4 of their eXXpedition Round the World—a two-year scientific research mission to study microplastics in our ocean with a focus on pinpointing solutions to ocean plastic pollution back on dry land. Today, December 7, 2019, at the International School of Aruba, the public had a chance to meet the women who have sailed as part of eXXpedition ‘Round the World’ to research and raise awareness about the issue of plastic pollution. See more information below.
eXXpedition Round the World crews on board S.V. TravelEdge will sail through some of the most important and diverse marine environments on the planet. This includes crossing four of the five oceanic gyres, where ocean plastic is known to accumulate, and the Arctic.
The mission wants to celebrate women in STEM, exploration and sailing. It is being crewed by 300 international multidisciplinary women in teams of ten and aims to create a powerful global network of ambassadors who can use their first-hand experience at-sea to implement solutions back on dry land. When not at sea the crews take part in land-based research and community outreach activities in each place they visit.
eXXpedition Mission Director Emily Penn said: “We’re excited to be exploring Antigua, Bonaire and Aruba during the next stage of eXXpedition Round the World. These islands provide the perfect base for us to consider the issues of plastic pollution at an island scale, which is reflective of the issues at a larger, global scale. We thank all our supporters in particular our voyage leg sponsor the Red Ensign Group and all our local partners.”
Voyage Leg Details: Leg 4 Antigua to Aruba with the Red Ensign Group
This voyage leg is generously sponsored by the Red Ensign Group and enables us to explore the beauty of the Caribbean, but also delve into the local issues around marine debris and plastic pollution.
Starting in Antigua, we will sail to Bonaire, an island where the reef-lined coast is protected by a National Marine Park and is therefore abundant with wildlife, before sailing onto the Dutch-Caribbean island of Aruba. Our onboard expert will facilitate scientific data collection and discussion around this environmental issue. The crew will get to explore the unique beauty of each island, and the impacts of plastic pollution and work with the local population to raise awareness and celebrate the environmental outreach work that is already taking place.
The Red Ensign Group is made up of the thirteen British Shipping Registers, the United Kingdom, Crown Dependencies – Guernsey, Isle of Man and Jersey – and Overseas Territories – Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Falkland Islands, Gibraltar, Montserrat, Saint Helena & Turks & Caicos. They are committed to promoting diversity, crew welfare, innovation and sustainability across the industry and around the globe.
Chief executive of the Bermuda Shipping and Maritime Authority, Francis Richardson said: ‘The Red Ensign Group is sponsoring eXXpedition in recognition of its promotion of women in maritime, its work exploring the impact on the environment of plastic and its innovative approach to providing solutions to the challenge of sustainability. The REG is about strength through collaboration and this is a prime example of how international technical cooperation between maritime states can underline projects like this one.”
On Saturday 7th December 2019 10:00-12:00 at the International School of Aruba the public have a chance to meet the women who have sailed as part of eXXpedition ‘Round the World’ to research and raise awareness about the issue of plastic pollution and the variety of solutions at the Sailing, Science and Solutions event. Come along to hear more about the eXXpedition crew’s adventures at sea, their scientific findings and to discuss solutions.
eXXpedition have teamed up with Impact Blue who works with national stakeholders to design and promote environmentally friendly practices in the private sector, allowing a real focus of this talk and Q and A to be focused on the local solutions within Aruba.