So this is Christmas and what have you done?

..another year over and a new one just begun. (Well, not really, but soon enough)

But truly enough (just as John Lennon sang), it’s good to consider just some of the things we’ve done during the year 2017 before popping on our holiday pyjamas and fully nodding off into the Christmas spirit. I will keep it short. I promise.

As I joined the gang a tad late (frankly speaking; quite a bit more than a tad), I didn’t have the chance to take part in some of the tasks. One of the more central tasks was the waste monitoring done in the pilot cities. For me, having observed it from an outsiders’ point of view at the time in Turku, it was quite an eye-catching sight, as it was for everyone passing by and the national media. And rightly so, one point of the project is to make people aware of the problem and hopefully, making them a part of the solution.

The monitoring itself gave varying results in the piloting cities, yet still drawing to similar clues of the pathways of marine litter and developing the methodology for future mapping of sources. Every piece of knowledge comes handy, as we progress on developing guidelines for the reduction of marine litter.

Further on educating and raising awareness, BLASTIC gave out educational material for a younger audience to be used in schools and kindergartens. Other activities to pinpoint, from the top of my head, includes the representation at several occasions, most notably the Our Oceans Conference in Malta.  We’ve also managed to get a wide range of authors in this blog to bring in different aspects to the marine litter issue, from politicians to experts of the environmental field.

As I’m writing this, my thoughts are wondering off and I’m quite anxious to go and get started on my own Christmas holiday. But before I go I want to assure you that we will be back next year to continue our quest. For now I would like to wish everyone a merry Christmas from all of us at BLASTIC!

Merry Christmas

Atte Lindqvist works as a project coordinator at KAT. He has a M.Sc. in Environmental and Marine Biology from Åbo Akademi University, and has also studied ecophysiology and stream ecology at the University of Gothenburg. Before starting at KAT in September, Atte worked as a planner at the environmental protection office in the City of Turku. His interests include biodiversity, environmental awareness and avian ecology. Today he focuses on issues in the Baltic Sea and Archipelago.