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Plastics & Seabase

May 29, 2018 / Murray Steward

Image borrowed in the hope of a shock reaction….

Like you, we are devastated at the extent of plastic pollution in the sea on this beautiful God given world, reaching as far as the isolated Galapagos Islands and in giant mid-ocean gyres containing millions of tonnes of plastic waste. Especially micro-plastics. I truly wish there was a better way.  (Some are coming – a Cornish company is developing a paper-based dispersible water-bottle we hope will also contain our products; we are investigating.)

In the meantime, here’s our small contribution. If we can do better, please tell us:

  1. We are fully committed to zero waste to landfill – our whole company and factory waste is recyclable or burnable*.
  2. We’ve changed our resin cleaning pastes from micro-particles to orange-peel based. The Florida orange juice industry found an outlet for their skins – as a biodegradable cleaner!
  3. Seabase takes the view that true sustainability is obtainable through longevity and quality. We therefore aim to make and sell items that last, and can be fully re-used or recycled.
  4. All our plastic containers are 100% recyclable, 100% UN approved. We have to use plastic, but where it is not critical, we are turning all container packaging to recyclable tin or aluminium. Recycling – multiple and on-going usage – is a far more sustainable process than even incineration, in our opinion, except where re-smelting is highly energy intensive.
  5. Our cardboard is fully recycled. We recycle cardboard through a machine that creates folded packaging for padding out our boxes. (image below).  You will have seen it. No polystyrene, no expanded plastic bags, we are free of plastic packaging from early 2018.
  6. No plastic tape for packaging. We use wet-glued paper which is 100% recyclable and burnable.
  7. Even our Seabase carrier bags are all made of recycled paper, stamped with lead-free water-based inks.
  8. We use an electric forklift, our Managing Director drives a Mitsubishi PHEV which gets him to and from work everyday on one electric charge. The other Directors walk. Mostly. We have EV’s on order.
  9. *Despite opposition, we are fully behind incineration as a valid waste disposal solution. The new one in Cornwall emits near zero emissions. The waste for landfill is approximately .01% less than it would have been. It is a valid solution, and we recommend its wide-spread use in controlled environments. Otherwise, what are the options?
  10. Internally, we use less paper and are committed to fully electronic, paperless invoicing and commerce.
  11. Our site of letting units, besides the various Seabase outlets, is populated by a solar panel company, an extremely earth oriented company, a charity,the RNLI Coastguard, a leather and wool company (which we encourage over artificial fibres), and ourselves, Seabase, with ethical policies.
  12. Every possible item we use is recycled through our waste company. Nothing (we hope) goes to landfill. Our bins are recyclable only bins.
  13. Our small factory is 95% solvent free.
  14. Our suppliers, especially US Blanks, are fully committed to green policies. The Epoxy Resin from Resin Research we sell, for example, has a very high Bio content. We are using more flax for surfboard construction.
  15. We operate our own green approval company – Gecos, Green Eco Surf Policies – which encourages green environmental practices from customers and suppliers alike.
  16. We are trying hard to do our bit. Its just not easy with the crazy EU regs. If we are failing anywhere please let us know. We will not be offended.