Marine Litter

Marine Litter

Stephanie Cope (TRS )  has submitted this  progress report to follow on from TCC’s  discussion  at its Dec meeting
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 Tiree Ranger Service [TRS] is currently engaged in the following actions with regard to marine litter:
1) Inviting community volunteers to become part of the project design and event planning process [see attached]:
I am seeking volunteers to create and adopt a long-term project plan for The Big Tiree Tidy; in addition to organising and running a follow-up 2019 beach cleaning event. My aim is to reduce the strain on TRS by delegating some tasks to willing and capable volunteers.
The first step will be a meeting between TRS, the new volunteers, and representatives from partner and stakeholder organisations. 
I would like to use this discussion to thrash-out some of the commonly suggested ideas, and their potential pitfalls (such as issues with the abuse of collection points at beaches; issues with beach litter being taken home and placed in holiday-let bins; the additional cost to A&BC of beach waste uplift; issues with Tiree’s capacity for sorting and recycle beach waste etc.) 
2) Producing a long-term project plan:
Once discussions have taken place, I would like to take the most feasible and island-appropriate ideas forward to draft up a long-term project strategy. TRS will then have a better sense of where financial support is required, and at what scale. 
3) Securing financial assistance:
Once these drafts are in place and we have a clearer plan, I intend to pursue grant funding to support delivery. 
In the short term, a one-off grant of ca. £500 would be sufficient to cover the cost of a single large event for 2019. In the longer term, partnership with other organisations may be required to sustain the effort into the future.
Working on the premise that TRS (and therefore TCDT) would be the organisation applying for funding, TRS would have to retain ultimate control over any activities financed by grants awarded to TRS/TCDT. 
That said, I believe that working closely with community volunteers would ensure delivery of a more considered and more appropriate project. I also believe that involving community members would aid succession once the current ranger leaves the post; increasing the longevity of this initiative. 
NGOs that TRS is currently in contact with:
– Surfers Against Sewage: I contacted SAS to register Tiree for an upcoming campaign. On doing so, I was told that the island had already been nominated. Manifestly, it would be good to ensure that effort and resources are not duplicated.
– Sea-Changers: This organisation looks like a potential source of short-term funding. TRS has two contacts in the organisation (Guy Grieve and Maya Plass). Maya will be visiting Tiree in August to lead an unrelated TRS session. 
– The GRAB Trust (Group for Recycling in Argyll and Bute): Terry Donovan plans to visit Tiree in mid-March, and has been extremely helpful and supportive so far. There appear to be some possibilities for long-term collaboration here. 
I hope this information is helpful.
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TCC thanks Steph for this report and will be actively encouraging  volunteers to contact Steph to take this initiative forward
TCC is also investigating what funding may be available from Scottish Government.
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Further to the above TCC Mike Russell MSP passed on this response he received from Scottish  Govt in reply to a direct approach to him by a Tiree visitor

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