Viewers clean Norway beach following Sky News whale death documentary

Around a hundred people from the UK and a dozen other countries congregated in Norway for a “nations united” clean-up of huge piles of plastic carried by the Gulf Stream.

Volunteers found plastic milk cartons from British supermarkets, soft drinks bottles with UK addresses and a fishing crate from the east coast of England.

More than 150 people travelled to Bergen in Norway after being inspired by an Ocean Rescue documentary about a whale that died nearby with 30 plastic bags in its stomach.

The volunteers were supported by a helicopter and a flotilla of small boats.

Arianna De Biasi, who came from Italy, said she was overwhelmed by what she saw.

“We were there for hours and we need it do it for hours again – it’s just not clean.”

Norway’s coastline, including its islands and fjords, stretches for more than 60,000 miles. Offshore there is a strong current bringing plastic from countries to the south.

Kenneth Bruvik, who drives the campaign, told Sky News: “This is not going to stop now. This a big revolution.

“We have started it and we are going to finish it, I can assure you.”

Afroz Shah, who helped to launch Sky Ocean Rescue and led beach clean-ups in Mumbai, was part of the group.

Mr Shah, a lawyer, has cleaned 12 tonnes of plastic from a beach in Mumbai.

He travelled halfway round the world to see the situation in Norway and was horrified that a country so sparsely populated could have such massive plastic problem.

He said: “Citizens all over the world must rise up.

“It’s takes too long to wait for the government and the law and the deposit scheme and penalties.

“Take responsibility, own up.”

The Plastic Whale – Plasthval in Norwegian – sparked a monumental effort to clean up the coastline.

At Bergen’s University the bones of that whale have been cleaned.

Once the skeleton has been pieced together it will be displayed in the town’s museum as a warning of what our lifestyles are doing to the environment.

Terje Lislevand, a University scientist who has led the project, said: “This is the reason people collect plastic and say no thanks to it in the shop.

“People are more conscious since the plastic whale.”

:: Sky’s Ocean Rescue campaign encourages people to reduce their single-use plastics. You can find out more about the campaign and how to get involved at www.skyoceanrescue.com

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