Cornish Plastic Pollution Coalition

One subject that unites all the marine conservation organisations in Cornwall is the issue of ocean plastic.

The Cornish Plastic Pollution Coalition came into being in 2016, with Rame Peninsula Beach Care being instrumental in forming this specific working group, which started among members of the Cornwall Wildlife Trust Your Shore network. We felt we could make more of a difference by joining forces to give us more clout in lobbying work with authorities and corporations.

Over the next year, the coalition grew and grew, to the point where it now includes well over 30 environmental and beach cleaning organisations and marine science experts, including the Cornwall Wildlife Trust, the National Trust in Cornwall, Truro Cathedral and the RSPB. Between us, we represent the concerns of tens of thousands of people in Cornwall and beyond.

The idea is to harness the many amazing skills and specialist knowledge of the different groups and individuals. We generally work through template letters that can be sent out quickly in response to different issues and incidents, for example organisations' corporate balloons found on Cornwall's beaches. We also produce reports, respond to government consultations, carry out interviews about plastic pollution and give talks and presentations - including in Parliament and at the European Commission.

We meet twice a year, and the main areas we act on are:

Balloon releases

Microplastics, including pellet losses from local plastic plants, and cosmetic microbeads. Particular focus on biobeads (plastic pellets used in wastewater treatment and found in vast numbers on Cornish beaches), with an in-depth report on this issue published in October 2017, which can found here

Single use plastics, particularly bottles - supprorting Surfers Against Sewage's Message in a Bottle campaign, calling for the introduction of a bottle deposit scheme (DRS) to reduce bottle related litter.

You can find the Cornish Plastic Pollution Coalition on Facebook and Twitter


To date, the members of the Cornish Plastic Pollution Coalition are: 

Cornwall Wildlife Trust

Surfers Against Sewage

Widemouth Task Force

Helford Voluntary Marine Conservation Area

National Trust in Cornwall

Truro Cathedral

Transition St Agnes

Prof. Brendan J. Godley, Chair in Conservation Science, Director of the Centre for Ecology and Conservation, University of Exeter (Penryn Campus)

Cornwall Seal Group Research Trust

Polzeath Marine Conservation Group

Rame Peninsula Beach Care

Friends of Portheras Cove

British Divers Marine Life Rescue

Fishing for Litter South West

Cornish Seal Sanctuary

Looe Marine Conservation Group

St Agnes Voluntary Marine Conservation Area

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds

Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust

#2 Minute Beach Clean

Capturing our Coast

Exeter & Falmouth University Students Union

Newquay Marine Group

Widemouth Task Force

West Cornwall Friends of the Earth

Atlantic Diver

Falmouth Marine Conservation

Sustainable St Agnes 

Love Portreath

Friends of the Fowey Estuary

Transition Falmouth

Transition Truro

Newquay Crab

Newquay Sea Safaris and Fishing

Prof. Richard Thompson (Plymouth University Marine Sciences Dept)

Fathoms Free

Cornwall Federation of WIs

Crackington Crew

Fishy Filaments

Truro Green Street Volunteers

Friends of Poldhu

Friends of Polurrian Beach

The Plastic Movement

The Final Straw Cornwall

Mounts Bay Marine Group

@Refresh Porthleven

Lizard Peninsula Friends of the Earth

Beach Guardian CIC

Rame Wildlife Group


ReFILL Cornwall

Smartie Lids on the Beach

PL24 Community Association

A Greener Bude

The Happy Turtle Company