UEL students’ ‘innovative’ design to go national in #BinsForGreenSeas campaign

PUBLISHED: 07:00 13 May 2019

UEL students Emily and George. Picture: UEL

UEL students Emily and George. Picture: UEL


A pair of budding product designers are doing their bit for the environment with a rubbish bin encouraging seaside visitors to take care when throwing away plastic waste.

Emily and George's winning design. Picture: UELEmily and George's winning design. Picture: UEL

Emily Hodgkinson and George Davis, third-year students on the University of East London's BSc product design course, have created a life-ring shaped bin casing with imagery and messaging that highlights the impact of plastic pollution on sea life.

The university, with environmental charity GreenSeas Trust and the mayor of Blackpool, is to launch the bin at the resort's pier on June 5, world environment day.

The goal is to roll out bins to UK seaside towns as part of the charity's #BinsForGreenSeas campaign.

Emily said: "Since designing the bin, I have developed a greater appreciation of the need to protect our oceans and wildlife."

George added: "The project was important to me as I had spent many years sailing in the sea cadets and saw first-hand the widespread impact plastic waste has on the sea.

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"This project has helped to develop my understanding of the major impact the objects we design have on the earth. It's time for eco-friendly designs to become the norm."

George and Emily met with GreenSeas Trust staff before using their artistic, visual and digital skills to create a design which the charity approved of and manufacturers could make.

The final design is based on a stack of life rings. The front shows images of sea life including fish scales, a dolphin and sea birds.

A plastic bag is shown near a jellyfish in a nod to the whales and sharks which can die from eating plastic, mistaking them for the sea creatures.

The design includes facts such as one stating more than one million sea birds are killed by plastic pollution each year.

Matthew Brown and Andrew Wright, UEL product design lecturers, said: "No one can fail to be moved by the photographs we have seen of polar bears playing with plastic on remote Artic islands and seals being strangled by plastic packing bands. "So we are very proud two of our students have played a significant role in disseminating the message of preventing plastic pollution.

"We are delighted to see George and Emily gaining insight into the product designer role."

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