Our Mission

Our mission is to recover ghost fishing nets and ocean plastic, we recycle what we recover into products to ensure the plastic never re-enters the sea. 

Each purchase of our recycled creations funds our work of recovering and recycling ocean plastic, thus creating a virtuous cycle of change.

We go beyond sustainability: rejecting only sustaining our ocean in its degraded state. We ensure our work is positively impactful in creating clean and healthy seas. We want marine wildlife to thrive, not merely to survive.

The Problem with Plastic

Our species in a century has created an astronomical 12 billion tonnes of plastic: enough to cover our planet in a giant plastic bag two times over. Only a tiny fraction of this plastic is still useful, despite being made of a material that lasts thousands of years. 

Of the 12 billion tonnes: 6% was recycled just once, 8% was burnt, and over 55% of the all plastic was either never used or used only once and then discarded straight into the environment.

This isn’t a problem that’s even begun to be solved. Each and every year the amount of new plastic produced weighs more that every single human on the planet put together.

 

Plastic can now be found in every environment, with the effects of most clear in the oceans, where lost fishing nets designed to kill and still lethal after being lost act as a malicious scythe reaping vast branches of the tree of life, targeting vulnerable species, spreading novel invasive species and diseases, entangling, choking and accumulating as micro-plastic into the bodies of wildlife.

In Cornwall we’ve found over 70% of the plastic in the ocean is lost or discarded fishing nets and gear, so called ‘ghost nets and gear’ which persist for hundreds of years.

We work to solve this urgent, complex and vast unfolding environmental crisis. Despite the vast scale of the man-made problem, it is only man-made so we can un-make it.

Our Approach

Plastic 100% gathered from the ocean

At Behaviour Change Cornwall we’re committed to cleaning our coast. Every piece of plastic from the biggest trawl net to the tiniest micro-pellet is picked by hand from a beach, river or the sea.

There are many other products made with some amount of ‘ocean’ plastic, but there is often no truth to that claim. Most of these items branded ‘ocean plastic’ is in fact plastic that has never been in the ocean, often it is either fishing net off cuts or plastic deemed ‘destined’ for the ocean.

Real recovery requires more investment in picking, cleaning and sorting as well as special machines to work with but is the only way to save our coastal habitats and oceans.

Recycling on land won’t tackle the existing plastic in the ocean. There is no easy hacks we have to do the hard dirty work and recover the plastics we put in the sea.

Building Trust with Transparency

Every piece of plastic is traced from the moment we recover it to the moment you, our customers receive it as a finished creation.

We record where and what plastic being gathered and by who and the carbon/economic value generated by this. Each piece of ocean plastic collected by us is traced on its journey from waste into its final product.

By tracing and sharing what we find and where with scientists and organisations we can help end the ocean plastic crisis.  

Surprisingly very little is known about the specific properties and dynamics of plastic pollution in our ocean and by helping others to understand the problem, we do our part in solving it forever.

Transforming Trash into Treasure

Using 100% ocean waste doesn’t mean we make rubbish products.

Our products are the opposite of mass-produced. No two can ever be exactly alike as they are made from a mix of plastics and nets never able to be replicated. 

You couldn’t make our items from virgin plastic if you tried.

By giving our ocean plastic a new purpose as a product, we can turn the problem into part of the solution; funding further cleanup and recycling with what we manage to raise this way.

Supporting LASTING CHANGE

Creating lasting change means we must support the people and groups who are undertaking that change ensuring that the funds we earn goes to those who work with Behaviour Change Cornwall.

This allows our plastic recovery teams, recyclers and creators to keep doing what the world needs them to do: create change.

To do this we see our customers as supporters, as without them we couldn’t do what we do. 

We work with customers, charities and businesses that support our recovery and recycling of ocean plastics. 

Engaging in an Environmental Mission

We work on everything from collaborative research projects using insights gained from behavioural science to reduce plastic entering the ocean. To teaming up with creatives, environmentalists and businesses to create new behaviour-changing articles and working with charities on new initiatives and actions. 

We share our insights and solutions with others for the greater goal of saving the ocean and the wildlife within. 

Meet the Founder

Sam Gill

Sam is a young Cornishman who has built a mission centred around creating positive change in our oceans, even if it meant hauling out one piece of plastic at a time.

While working at the Eden Project and his Masters of Research in Sustainable Futures at the University of Exeter Sam researched ways of changing environmentally-damaging behaviours in relation to plastic. Ranging from reducing the amount of macro-plastics entering sensitive marine environments to projects communicating the importance of the ocean they effect in maintaining human and planetary health. 

“Plastics are my obsession, they are everywhere! We live submerged in them and yet rarely ever are consciously aware of them, like fish in the water of the ocean. They have changed everything, from the types of fresh foods we can enjoy, to net gauges shrinking size of fish in the sea through evolution. This obsession drives me to change people’s perceptions of plastic”.