Plastic pollution is “everybody’s problem,” said Angela Sun, director of the independent film “Plastic Paradise: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch,” screened on campus as part of a Breaking Plastic event to promote awareness on the issue of plastic pollution.
Sun hosted the Breaking Plastic event alongside Sigma Nu Fraternity at the University Student Union’s Northridge Center on Sept. 30.
The documentary follows Sun on her journey to Midway Atoll, the center of the “Great Pacific garbage patch.” According to the film, most of our trash ends up in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. As a result, Midway and the surrounding sea become a landfill each year, estimating between double the size of Texas and up to the size of the U.S.
Sun has been working on this project for eight years. She uses historic footage to highlight the fact that people once survived without certain products and materials.
The UCLA alumnus also documents graphic photos and live footage to show the most affected victims of human waste: marine animals and birds.
“I never thought this was such a catastrophic issue,” said Sigma Nu Historian, Matteo Jin, 21. The media management and marketing major thinks the whole CSUN community should be mindful of where trash goes.
Heal the Bay, Plastic Pollution Coalition, 5Gyres, Klean Kanteen, and Brush with Bamboo were some of the organizations that also participated in the event. They inform, educate, and work with communities and students.
Their most common goal is to develop an understanding of alternate products that they think everyone on the planet can ultimately benefit from.
Plastic Pollution Coalition, for instance, promotes the usage of stainless steel and glass instead of plastic and styrofoam.
Sun narrates in the film that many consumers are not aware of the toxins they put in their bodies. During her time researching the plastic industry, Sun became aware of PCBs (Polychlorinated Biphenyls) that are present in plastic items including baby bottles and toys.
Marcus Eriksen of 5Gyers raised the question of, “who’s going to pay for the consumption of responsible solutions?”
According to Sun and her fellow advocates, some people choose to blame consumers of the ongoing plastic pollution, while they believe people should instead look more closely at the companies producing these products.
“It brings us all together to improve our community, our environment,” said Mitchell Englander, Los Angeles city councilman of the 12th District.,
Visit www.plasticparadisemovie.com for more information or to purchase Sun’s documentary.