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Campaign Art: Become a citizen of the Trash Isles

Roxanne Bauer's picture
People, Spaces, Deliberation bloggers present exceptional campaign art from all over the world. These examples are meant to inspire.

Many of us have seen the iconic photograph of a seahorse latched onto a cotton swab. It’s just one example of how prevalent plastic debris is in the ocean.

Every year, hundreds of tons of plastic trash enters the ocean, splintering into smaller and smaller pieces that are often eaten by marine animals and birds. The plastic trash is everywhere It’s  in sediments at the bottom of the ocean, it floats at the surface, is washed up on remote islands, and is even frozen inside Arctic iceSome estimates say that by 2050, there could be more plastic than fish in the sea.

Now, there’s a gigantic mass of plastic waste the size of France floating in the Pacific Ocean. To call attention to it, the environmental charity Plastic Oceans Foundation paired up with news and entertainment publication LADBible and TV presenter Ross Kemp to campaign to have the giant mass of trash officially recognized by the UN as a country with its own citizens, currency, flag, passport and stamps.

LADBible has called this emerging nation The Trash Isles.

Al Gore, who won the Nobel Peace Prize jointly with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in 2007, is now the nation's first honorary citizen, and the Isles  submitted an application to the United Nations to be recognized as the world’s 196th country.

The campaign also has a call to action, issued as The Trash Isles Manifesto:
  • Develop biodegradable materials
  • Introduce the carbon tax
  • Create laws to increase recycling

You can join the more than 100,000 people who have already signed the petition to be granted citizenship become a Trash Isles citizen.

The project is the idea of advertising creatives, Michael Hughes and Dalatando Almeida, and designer Mario Kerkstra who helped create a flag, a passport, currency (called debris), and stamps.

Even if the Trash Isles fails in its attempt to be officially recognized, the campaign does raise awareness of the growing problem. Alongside the garbage patch in the north Pacific, researchers found another patch forming in the south Pacific in July of this year.

Trash Isles


Submitted by ray on

I Have already signed in the petition, how do i get a passport ? Wish it to be recognised officially soon. So we can see it change with greater efforts from governments and individuals.

Submitted by Kenneth John Farrell on

Sadly and unfortunately many of European Governments are to blame as the turn a blind eye on the problem.
They have imposed a change on plastic bags in supermarkets but sadly the revenue they are collecting is not been used to tackle the problem instead is been used for other purposes.

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