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What can you do in 2 minutes?

What can you achieve in 2 minutes? Make a cup of tea? Brush your teeth? Write a text? Ultimately there’s not a lot you can do in 2 minutes that can make much of an impact, or is there?

The #2minutebeachclean movement was started in 2009 by a wonderful man, surfer and chef, Martin Dorey. He was sick of seeing so much rubbish on the beaches he regularly surfed and wanted to do something to improve things. With the development of social media he’s been able to spread the news far and wide and with such a simple concept – pick up rubbish for 2 minutes. It’s now gone global with the help of Martin’s friend, eco-warrior and all round heroine Sharon King, who regularly updates the Instagram with witty comments and enthusiasm.

But it’s not just about those 2 minutes the dedicated few put in daily as along with Surfers Against Sewage they are raising awareness of the impact that rubbish is having on our oceans. No matter how many beach cleans, 85% of rubbish is still in the oceans, being churned and broken up into smaller pieces that are all the harder to remove and can even get into the fish we eat – blerggg! This movement is encouraging not only individuals but also governments to reduce the amount of waste that is ending up there in the first place.

We first stumbled across the @2minutebeachclean in winter 2014 and it just makes sense. Go to the beach, pick up the rubbish seen, which following the winter storms can be a lot and make sure it finds a bin. Sometimes we take a photo, sometimes the weather is too hideous to stop. With some cleans we’ve removed fairly hefty amounts of rubbish. Personally we never time them and don’t always stick to 2 minutes but it feels amazing to be helping clean up the beach we love.

There also an added bonus to this new found habit, we found something much more exciting, much prettier and something recyclable. We started to notice pieces of ocean tumbled glass that had been rolled around and sanded down to a smooth gem. These great finds are what has helped us to develop Zeaglass and the amazing pieces of jewellery you can get on our website.

Now we wouldn’t advocate throwing glass into the sea but we are grateful for the years it’s happened. Looking through the histories of Cornish ports and on so many beaches have found signs of glass from the early 20th century and we can only imagine older in some cases. Sadly there are also a lot of bright green bottles shards and sharp glass which has been more recently dumped into the sea. With our knowledge of the impact we have on our planet and with some very well developed recycling and waste disposal systems it’s crazy that this wouldn’t happen anymore but education and awareness are our greatest tools and this is where all of you come in!

So here is our first blog, raising your awareness of the plight of our seas! If you’re next on the beach and you notice any rubbish why not pick it up, snap a picture of your good-doings and tag #2minutebeachclean. It’s that easy! There is now such a following of the beach cleaners that Surfdome and Reef are even supporting the movement and providing prizes if you add #surfdome and @reef_europe.

www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-28373761