The Rise Above Plastic Pollution project united partners from Oregon’s ocean and coastal organizations around a shared goal: helping Oregonians keep single-use plastics out of the environment. Project partners Surfrider Oregon, SOLVE, Oregon Shores Conservation Coalition, Oregon State Parks, and the Oregon Coast Aquarium joined forces to spread a message of inspiration throughout Oregon—together we can Rise Above Plastic Pollution!

Throughout Spring 2019, Oregonians were invited to take the Rise Above Plastic Pollution (RAPP) Pledge, get involved in beach and street cleanups, spread the RAPP message on social media, and contribute to a day of outreach and education for students and legislators at the Oregon State Capitol. 

As spring rolled into summer, Oregonians proved yet again how much they love and value their coast and ocean, and that they’re willing to go the extra mile for a healthy environment—by pledging to make personal choices that keep plastic out of the sea, educating fellow community members, and cleaning up their beaches and towns.

Rise Above Plastic Pollution Pledge

Armed with the knowledge that scientists have estimated by 2050, the weight of PLASTIC in the ocean will be equal to the weight of ALL THE FISH in the sea, Oregonians took personal pledges to Rise Above Plastic Pollution. 

Pledge-takers committed to building lifestyle habits to avoid using single-use plastics. Commitments included “Breaking up with the Plastic Bottle,” “Ditching the Disposable Cups, Lids, and Straws,” “Being Plastic Bag Free,” “Ditching Disposable To-Go-Ware,” and “Being a Smart Shopper” by refusing to purchase fruits and veggies wrapped in plastic. 

Included amongst the heroic pledge takers were Oregon Governor Kate Brown, 43 members of the Oregon State Legislature, and even Her Deepness, Dr. Sylvia Earle! If you missed the opportunity to take the RAPP pledge, never fear, there is still time to join these ocean heroes, take the pledge here

Governor Kate Brown after signing the Rise Above Plastic Pollution Pledge

Sylvia Earle chose to ditch the straw in her RAPP pledge!

Rise Above Plastic Pollution Month Highlights

Throughout Rise Above Plastic Pollution month, multiple plastic pollution cleanups were held, and Oregonians showed up to clean up! From microplastics to big ol’ chunks of marine debris, volunteers removed LOTS of plastic from the environment. In May, Surfrider Oregon chapters lead five beach and neighborhood cleanups, removing more than 400 pounds of litter!

RAPP partners shared the Rise Above Plastic Pollution message all over social media, with staff from partner organizations participating in the fun! 

SOLVE staff proudly show off their RAPP commitments

Oregon Shores shared one of their favorite alternatives to single-use plastic bags.

Surfrider’s Newport, Coos Bay, and Portland Chapters took a ride in the Rise Above Plastic Pollution wave to encourage folks to quit single-use plastics. All chapter events in Oregon focused on plastic pollution – from beach and neighborhood cleanups to movie screenings and plastic policy presentations.

Sam Case Elementary Surfrider Club students show off their pledge commitments (Newport, OR)

The Portland Chapter leaders were stoked to take the pledge!

Coos Bay Chapter leadership having fun with the plastic wave

Rise Above Plastic Pollution at the Oregon State Capitol

Oregon’s ocean lovers from Coos Bay to Portland descended upon the Oregon State Capitol to engage students and legislators in a day of education and action! (More on RAPP Day at the Capitol here.)

Governor Kate Brown officially proclaimed March 14th “Rise Above Plastic Pollution Day” at the Oregon State Capitol.

Rising Above Plastic Pollution doesn’t have to stop in May!

Continue on with your pledge to reduce a single-use item or commit to eliminating another item!