If you happened to be passing Deal Pier on a recent Bank Holiday, you may have caught sight of MAKING WAVES.


The four masked figures grouped around the iconic sculpture were members of Deal and Walmer-based East Kent Climate Action, their purpose to provoke thought and raise further awareness about ocean plastic.

80% of plastic in the ocean originates on land (source: WWF) – a fact supported by Pick Deal Clean, the area’s litter and waste-picking group. Plastic in its many forms is one of the most common materials collected in streets, alleys, parks, hedges etc. by the group’s members.

MAKING WAVES’ visual statement strikes a memorable chord for onlookers. Clad in greens and blues, using only hand-crafted rainsticks to create sound, it is the slightly eerie stillness and silence that packs a punch in our noisy world. Clear, crisp messaging on double-sided sandwich boards provides us with the key to understanding the aim of this mysterious ensemble. The taking of photos and videos is encouraged: the environmental plea of this small, but impactful performance needs to be widely viewed, absorbed and shared.

A total of 95% of the plastic used globally is packaging, and is disposed of after one use (source: UN Environmental Plan). If we think it is being recycled, we need to think again. Only 9% of all the plastic ever produced has been recycled (source: Organization for Economic Co-operation & Development). Many products which claim to consist of recycled materials commonly contain shocking levels of toxins. Plastic production is set to double by 2040.

“What can I do?” Refuse and reduce. Make it clear to sellers that you’d prefer products without plastic wrapping. Feeling brave? Unwrap your purchases at point of sale and leave the plastic behind. Many sellers are equally frustrated about the amount of low-grade plastic wrapping their goods. Consumer action can help to persuade of the need to confront wholesalers and manufacturers about the issue.

The best solution to dealing with waste? Stop creating it.


MAKING WAVES welcomes additional wavers to participate in future appearances. Get in touch with EKCA via Facebook. Pick Deal Clean continues its community effort to help with the removal of litter and waste from the CT14 district. Support and/or join them through Facebook, Instagram and Nextdoor Deal.


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