How We Can Help Endangered Sea Turtles: BeCause Tees x SEE Turtles
Nearly all species of sea turtles are endangered, with some classed as critically endangered, including Hawksbills and many subpopulations of Leatherbacks. This highlights their plight and the urgent need to implement change. BeCause Tees are delighted to announce our collaboration with SEE Turtles. Find out more about this nonprofit and the problem of plastic pollution below.
Why is Plastic a Problem for Endangered Sea Turtles?
If there is a poster species for the worldwide epidemic of plastic pollution, it’s sea turtles.
The mothers swim through islands of plastic on their migrations and crawl through plastic to find their spots to nest on beaches. Nests are impacted by toxic microplastic particles and hatchlings crawl back through macroplastic on their way to the water. They confuse plastic bags and balloons for their favorite food, jellyfish. Straws can get stuck in their noses and plastic spoons stuck in their throat. They get caught in six pack rings and ghost fishing gear. It’s inescapable and it takes decades to biodegrade.
Photo credit: @juanma_contortrix
How is SEE Turtles Helping?
SEE Turtles believe the long-term solution is ending single use plastic. But even if all plastic production was to stop today, millions of tons would still be floating in the ocean, impacting sea turtles, other ocean wildlife, and humans. SEE Turtles launched their Sea Turtles & Plastic program in 2021 to advocate for reducing plastic waste and to support community efforts to clean plastic from sea turtle habitats.
To date, they’ve provided $80,000 in funding to 12 local projects in 10 countries to clean plastic from turtle nesting beaches and feeding areas. These projects all benefit the rural coastal communities where they take place, providing employment and income opportunities for local residents in cleaning and recycling the waste and selling the new products that are created. Examples of these projects include purchasing new recycling equipment in Malaysia, funding sea turtle rehabilitation in Uruguay, and turning plastic bags into handbags in Colombia.
SEE Turtles also works to advocate for a plastic-free future through their Travelers Against Plastic program. They provide simple ways for people to help fight single use plastic, both by advocating for policies to reduce waste and providing tips for living plastic-free.
Photo credit: Gilby Alvarez @mazuntemagazine
BeCause Tees x SEE Turtles
We’re excited to partner with SEE Turtles to raise awareness about the impact of plastic pollution and to support programs working to reduce this threat to sea turtles and coastal communities. With our new line of sea turtle shirts, 5% of each sale will go towards SEE Turtles’ work to reduce plastic pollution. Our donations go directly towards plastic cleanup - for every dollar donated, two pounds of plastic are cleaned up. Join us in supporting SEE Turtles and their important work to protect these amazing creatures and their habitats from the harmful effects of plastic pollution. Shop the BeCause Tees x SEE Turtles Collection.
Featured photo credit: Gilby Alvarez @mazuntemagazine
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