- The plastic that ends up in the oceans can circle the earth four times in a single year.
- Covestro's picture book and app aim to introduce children to the idea of waste management and teach them the 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle).
- 170 volunteers from the Affiliate Company Covestro Resins Taiwan helped to restore our earth.
The ocean covers more than 70 percent of the surface of our planet – it is the lungs of the earth, the source of life. Human beings and all other creatures depend upon the ocean to be able to live. The protein that is consumed by more than one billion people around the world mainly comes from the ocean. Covestro Taiwan launched an Ocean Protection Storytelling Program in 2017, and further developed this picture book into a bilingual interactive story app in 2019, which is still available in the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store. Covestro aims to raise children’s awareness of current environmental issues and the importance of waste management through diverse channels, by using an interactive approach.
Within four years, Covestro, the National Parks, and five National Museums had reached out to 37,219 students from 130 schools across Taiwan. The app was then further localized and launched in Thai, simplified Chinese and Cantonese versions in 2020. In 2021, the wind power developers and operators, wpd Taiwan Enegry, joined as the very first corporate partner of Covestro Taiwan. The Resins and Functional Materials business of DSM, which Covestro acquired in April of this year and renamed as Covestro Resins, also mobilized 170 employees to help restore our earth through beach and forest cleanups across Taiwan.
“The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods” is the theme for World Oceans Day 2021. It is also a declaration of intention
s that launches a decade of challenges to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal 14, “conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas, and marine resources” by 2030. According to data from the UN, up to thirteen million tons of plastic enter our oceans every year, where it smothers coral reefs and threatens vulnerable marine wildlife, sometimes persisting for up to 1,000 years before it fully disintegrates. Taiwan’s environmental data also reveals that 90% of the waste in the oceans surrounding Taiwan is plastics, with the proportion of disposable plastics being as much as 78.2%.
In order for children to understand this global crisis in an easy way, through an interactive approach, Covestro Taiwan has partnered with National Parks, the National Museum of Marine Science and Technology, the National Taiwan Science Education Center, the National Museum of Natural Science, the National Science and Technology Museum, the National Museum of Marine Biology and Aquarium, and wpd Taiwan Enegry. The bilingual story app and storytelling programme “Bright Minds for a Brighter World” told the story of three little Earth Guardians with superpowers who accidentally found that the nose of a mother turtle was blocked by a straw. In order to find out the root cause, they began a series of adventures on the sea. Soon after, they found that the source of ocean trash was people’s improper waste management and lack of environmental awareness. The story ended with an illustration of the correct ways to dispose of waste, including information about the classification of recycling, and the reduction and reuse of waste. Children were also encouraged to write down their commitments to the planet through interactive activities.
In addition, 170 colleagues from Covestro’s affiliated company, Covestro Resins (Taiwan), worked hand in hand on the beach cleanup at Pingtung Fangliao, and removed foreign species at Zhishan Cultural Ecological Green Park. They also worked together to restore our earth at Taoyuan, Changhua, and Tainan.
“Having a clean ocean is not an option, but a must,” said Troy Shao, Managing Director of Covestro Resins (Taiwan), the affiliated company of Covestro.
“How to handle waste more responsibly is one of the great challenges of our time. We are deeply grateful and honoured to be supported and jointly promoted by the National Parks Division of the Construction and Planning Agency, the five National Museums, and wpd Taiwan Enegry, which is also a German company. Only when the government, industry, and society work together can environmental protection be truly sustainable and successful. We also welcome other organizations to join our actions,” said Michael Lee, Managing Director of Covestro Taiwan. To date, Covestro Taiwan and the five National Museums have reached out to more than 37,219 students, and received reply letters from 2,200 students at 130 schools in Taiwan.