Into the Gyre (2010)

It’s Plastic free July! I was going to kick off the month with a trash audit because it’s a great way of tracking your plastic use and looking for alternatives (reducing what you use, finding ways to reuse things you can’t avoid, etc.). But, that’s going to have to wait until August.

Instead, I’m using the weekly bingo challenge from Marandas World (Instagram) as inspiration (thought I’m not officially participating in the challenge). This first week was education and awareness. One of the options is watching documentaries. I don’t have Netflix, so I had to look for alternative options. My library gives me access to Hoopla and Kanopy, amongst other great digital resource platforms.

Hoopla is generic entertainment (books, movies, etc.). It doesn’t have the best selection, but I found a couple films about the environment. The only one I found that’s focused on plastic is Into the Gyre (2012), which is about a group of scientists that sail out to the North Atlantic Gyre to gather research (it can also be rented or purchased via Vimeo). I think a lot of people would find it boring, but I found it really interesting to see how they trawled for plastic and learn little tidbits about plastic in the oceans.

Kanopy focuses on documentaries and films that enrich us (it’s a really great resource and has content just for kids). I found several films: Bag It: Is your Life too Plastic? (2010), Oceans: The Mystery of the Missing Plastic (2016), Plastic Planet: Investigating Plastic and its Effects on our Health (2010), and Straws: The Impact of Plastic Straws on our Environment (2017). I’m sure there’s more – they have a whole section of great eco films. I’m currently watching Bag It! and it’s a good mix of informative and fun.

Lastly, Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (2013) can be bought or rented directly from the films website or via Vimeo.

Bonus option: Like on Vimeo, you can buy or rent films from YouTube. Some documentaries are even posted for free, like content from CBC Docs (just make sure that you’re watching the official version from the official creator so that any ad revenue can go directly to them).

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