Blue Hill, ME

Plastic Oceans International to name Blue Hill a ‘BlueCommunity’

Dianne Price

Blue Hill, Maine, is a coastal town where residents work hard to preserve the health and beauty of their fragile ecosystem. On July 20, Tod Hardin, an executive with Plastic Oceans International will visit the community and Shaw Institute to recognize the work they do by bestowing them with the the BlueCommunities designation.

“We are delighted that Tod Hardin, COO and founder of Plastic Oceans International, will visit to tell us more about why this BlueCommunity designation is important – and what it can mean to the future of Blue Hill and our precious coastal ecosystems,” said Charles Rolsky, Ph.D., senior research scientist for the Shaw Institute.

Hardin will present “From the Bottom Up: Empowering Local Action to Create Change Worldwide.”

Currently there are 35 BlueCommunities, ranging from Bali, India to Durban, South Africa, to the Seychelles and the Canary Islands, Spain,” said Rolsky, who is also director of science for Plastic Oceans, North America. “These communities are committed to preserving the environment and have much to learn and share with one another – and will no doubt, serve to inspire our future efforts – as we will do theirs.”

According to Hardin, “local efforts are the building blocks for creating the kind of socioeconomic and environmental change that can lead to a heathier planet and a more equitable society.” According to Plastic Oceans International, a BlueCommunity is a “shared coastal geographic region where the local culture and economy are driven by the waterways they inhabit.”

Hardin will also highlight plans for future collaborations between Plastic Oceans and the Shaw Institute.

The BlueCommunities initiative resonates strongly with the achievements and ideals of our founder, Susan Shaw,” said Rolsky. “Our affiliation with Plastic Oceans presents an incredible learning opportunity.”

Hardin is an accomplished filmmaker who works to produce films that help the public understand the importance of preserving waterways as well as marine and coastal ecosystems. He has served as a producer on three feature films and several shorts; and recently made his directorial debut with the award-winning documentary Against the Current. He is also a producer on the recently completed documentary, The Erie Situation; and also a producer on the forthcoming documentary, Cutting the Line.

Plastic Oceans International is a US-based 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization whose goal is to end plastic pollution and to foster sustainable communities worldwide. The organization operates with the belief that people “can and must act locally in order to create change globally.” The organization accomplishes it goals through education, activism, advocacy and science.

A zoom link will be available for those unable to attend in person but wishing to watch the lecture live and participate in the Q&A. After the event, the lecture video, along with past lectures, can be found Shaw Institute Summer Lecture Series events page.

The event is free and open to the public. It begins at 5 p.m. with light refreshments, followed by Hardin’s talk at 6 p.m. Shaw Institute is located at 55 Main St., Blue Hill, ME 04614. Masks are recommended. Families are welcome and encouraged to attend.

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Dianne Price has a professional passion for bringing stories about health, medicine, science, and mental health to life. Her personal passion focuses on how the arts can elicit creativity, curiosity and joy.

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