The Port of London Authority recently launched a campaign as part of the Cleaner Thames Campaign where artist Michelle Reader created a sculpture made of litter to highlight the amount of dumped rubbish found in the Thames. Experts from the Royal Holloway University of London had conducted extensive research to find that 75% of Thames Flounder fish had consumed plastic. Dagenham and Rainham MP Jon Cruddas actively advocated his support.
Jon commented: "This campaign and the sculpture is a wakeup call, highlighting the devastating statistics that show how polluted the river Thames has become. One of the worries is that Rainham Marshes, which is home to a wide variety of flora and fauna backs onto the Thames, and if pollution levels continue to rise it could pose a threat."
Rainham Marshes, the largest RSPB nature reserve in London falls in the parliamentary constituency of Dagenham and Rainham. With rising levels of pollution it is a possibility that there could be a negative effect on local wildlife.
Michelle Reader has created a sculpture out of litter and plastic, inspired by the tonnes of litter found in the river Thames. The aim of the sculpture was to underline the environmental damage being caused to the historic river. The sculpture, ‘A Bellyful of Plastic’, was created after experts showed huge figures of fish that have consumed plastic.
Michelle was both amazed and distraught to find so much disposed rubbish on the foreshore which thus encouraged her to create this work of art. The sculpture allows us to visually capture the reality of the litter issues in the Thames without having to witness it first hand.
The river Thames has is said to be relieved of more than 300 tonnes of litter and driftwood every year which mainly consists single use bottles.
The Cleaner Thames campaign aims to tackle this pollution issue and is urging people to be aware of where they dispose of their rubbish instead of the historic landmark of London, the River Thames.
Mr Cruddas has also stated: "I am shocked by the rising level of pollution found in the Thames, and fully support this awareness campaign. I hope that it has the desired impact and forces people and companies to think twice about dumping waste and litter into the river."