Surfrider X Sarah Bellums Post Beach Clean Up Trash Sort

‘Twas a great event! 🙂 Thanks to all who came out!

Saturday, September 19 is International Coastal Clean Up day!

Join the Surfrider Foundation – San Luis Obispo at Yerba Buena street in North Morro Bay from 9am to 12noon to clean the beach!

After we beach clean up we will be bringing the trash from multiple beach sites to Mitchell Park to sort, clean and transform into up-cycled art! (1-4pm)

The whole community is invited to come see all the different kinds of waste materials found on our beaches. All ages are welcome!

Vegan snacks will be provided from Bliss Cafe and you will receive a day discount to our local eco-fiber store The Hemp Shak!! 🙂

This is a Zero Waste event so please bring reusable gloves if you plan on handling the trash! 🙂

See all you Ocean Lovers There!! ❤ ❤

TRASH SORT

 

Village Building Convergence

I am floating on a cloud of inspiration and joy! ❤

Traveled up to the beautiful forests of Portland, OR to run the waste management at City Repair‘s Village Building Convergence.vbc logo

A 10-day Community Building, Permaculture Action, Paradigm Shifting Festival where neighbors came together with visitors to create community spaces that feature public art, gathering places, permaculture gardens and natural building in a process they call “placemaking”.
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During the day there were 40+ hands-on Community Action projects around the city and at night we all came together for workshops, delicious meals, dance and play.

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The first day of festivities I coordinated a River Clean Up along the Willamette River in partnership with Solve Oregon, Surfrider Portland Chapter and The VBC. 

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We gathered trash to clean the river bank and to collect material for trash art or “Tart” to be created throughout the week. Picking up trash feels like a treasure hunt, looking for interesting colors, textures and beauty in discarded materials. Here is a picture of the sorted trash (aka free art materials:) from the river clean up.

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I call this trash picking practice Tart Waste Management. Creating trash art to get people to think about the life cycle of the materials they come across in their daily lives.  Everyday new friends would come together and create art out of these discarded materials. Here is a picture of Kate & Eric about to cut up some trash and some trash found on my walks around Ladd’s Addition.

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For the waste management during the festival we put out Compost and Recycle receptacles to make it easier for attendees to know what goes where and to encourage conversations about the absence of trash.
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The VBC was the most inspiring gathering I have ever attended. All of the people there were so loving, warm and divinely activated! I am filled with gratitude for being welcomed so open heartily into their inspiring community.

Combing our love for the whimsical trees of Oregon we began creating this tree mosaic out of the “trash”. IMG_8634 IMG_8641IMG_8650

Kin-necting and working the passionate people of the VBC made my overwhelming feelings regarding the state of the world subside a little. I kept thinking, wow! Here are some people living their values and effectively engaging and inspiring future leaders!

The festival was so close to zero waste! They used reusable plates and utensils for dinner (many thanks to all the dishwashers!), they had stainless steel city repair cups at the event for sale and the plastic solo cups they did have were cleaned and reused. There was hardly any trash created at the festival, but the two main trash items were coconut bliss bar packaging and Plastic solo cups for serving beer and komubcha.

I really wanted to figure out something we could do with the Solo cups and came up with the idea to create Han Solo and tie him and the tree piece together with saying “May the Forest be with You” ❤ Infinite gratitude to all the beautiful souls hat came together to create this art!

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The last day of the convergence was the most inspiring day for me! In the morning I went over to “Share-it Square” to help re-paint their intersection and to get a tour from Mark Lakeman, the founder of City Repair, of all the beautiful things they had done in their neighborhood to create a living community.

Touring around the neighborhood made me feel like I had been transported into an enchanting ecotopia! Cisterns, grey water systems, cob structures (benches, saunas, chicken palace), solar powered t-stations, kids play houses, information stations, gates joining neighbors yards, community compost system, gardens, green roofs, shared art spaces, and best of all a community swing! 🙂 They are taking steps towards going 100% off the grid while still living in the city!

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The hub of all this activation is The Planet Repair Institute, where they had the first VBC 15 years ago.

Here is a video of the intersection painting this year.

The day after the festival a bunch of us all got together at Kelley Point Park to celebrate, swim and relax along the river.

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My friend Kirk and I picked up trash along the shore and created this fairy home together. ❤ 🙂

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The next step is to bring this inspiring convergence back to my own community in San Luis Obispo 🙂

 

 

Check out this video of Mark Lakeman talking about the VBC and the roots of City Repair and the Village Building Convergence:

 

Sending infinite love ❤

Sarah Bellum

OWN YOUR WASTE

Art X Trash X Manufacturers

Let’s start with a quote from Annie Leonard, CEO of GreenPeace and Creator of Story of Stuff;

“For decades, the producers of disposable packaging and products have tried to say it’s our fault that their toxic throwaway junk litters our landscapes, fouls our waters, and kills fish and wildlife. Their most ingenious and insidious effort was the iconic “Crying Indian” ad, which showed a supposedly Native American man (actually, an Italian-American actor) paddling a canoe through a trash-strewn river. As he walks along the shore, a passenger in a passing car throws a bag of trash out the window. A single tear rolls down his cheek as the narrator intones: “People start pollution. People can stop it.”

The ad first aired in 1971 and had a huge impact on a generation awakening to the environmental crisis. We watched it over and over, shared the faux-Indian’s grief, and vowed to make changes in our individual lives to stop pollution. That was exactly what the ad’s creators wanted, since the ad was produced by the garbage-makers themselves.

The ad was part of a strategic effort to brand waste as a problem that should be solved not by stricter regulations, but exclusively by getting individuals to feel responsible and focus on changing their day-to-day habits.” – Annie Leonard

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Putting the responsibility onto the people instead the corporations manufacturing the waste causes not only environmental harm but lays a huge burden on the people of this Earth. People everywhere struggle with guilt and anger towards themselves and others for our over consumptive culture.

When in reality the manufacturers producing materials that don’t break down in nature need to take responsibility for their waste. The Earth works by building up and breaking down. A tree flowers, fruits, falls and returns nutrients back to the earth as it decomposes into the soil. Huge companies are creating materials that take thousands of years to break down and rapid consumption has caused these materials to pile up in the ocean and landfills.

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One way to combat these synthetic materials from over taking your community is to ban them through policy change. An example of a material that needs to be banned is #6 polystyrene, also known as “styrofoam”. It is not recycled in San Luis Obispo county and is filling up the ocean and landfill at an ever increasing rate.

This past weekend we had a Surfrider X ECO SLO beach clean up at Sandspit in Montana de Oro. Tons of volunteers came out and we picked up almost 300 pounds of trash in 3 hours!  Bottle caps, cigarette butts, balloons, bottles and TONS of little pieces of polystyrene.

With the advice from artist and activist Peggy Oki, I am starting a visual petition called ” Own your waste”. A petition to get manufacturers to take responsibility for the waste they create. If I find a piece of trash on the beach that says “skittles” on the wrapper, I think Skittles brand should  Own Their Waste and pay a littering fine.

Here are some pictures from my visual petition attention to the manufacturers who are creating the waste:

Be a part of the “own your waste” visual petition: Take a picture with trash that you pick up on the street, beach, creek, etc and send it to me to add to the visual petition.

I was so astounded by the amount of trash we collected at the clean up I took some of it home with me and created a trash rainbow 🙂 I love revaluing materials and creating something happy out of refuse. The white clouds are completely made from polystyrene pieces. Everything was found on Sandspit , a beach that by first glance seems very clean.

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XOXO Sarah Bellum

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Microbeads and DIY Tooth Powder

❤ Please share, share and share my kickstarter campaign to inspire a zero waste world through Art and Activism!  ❤

Hello Ocean Lovers!

5 Gyres have spearheaded a campaign to ban plastic microbeads from personal care products like face wash and toothpaste.

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Plastic microbeads are designed to be washed down our drains and are too small to be filtered out by wastewater treatment plants.

In turn, they end up in our waterways and Oceans where they are consumed by countless sea creatures.

Here is a simple zero waste recipe to make your own tooth powder/paste so we can all be plastic free for the sea! ❤

DIY Tooth Powder

You will need: 

1 glass jar

1 large spoon (1 cup) of baking soda (whitening and cleansing)

1 teaspoon of stevia powder (natural sweetener)

I got these powders in bulk from my local food co-op for under $5! 🙂

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Directions: Mix the baking soda and stevia powder together by shaking them in the jar. Voila! You have just made your very own tooth powder without creating any trash! How easy was that!? If you prefer tooth paste just add some warm coconut oil and mix it all together. You can also add your favorite essential oils to give your desired flavor.

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Application: Sprinkle sparingly on a wet toothbrush and brush your teeth!

Please check out my kickstarter and help support my vision of a zero waste world inspired from ART and FUN! ❤ 

XOXO Sarah Bellum

Zero Waste creates a Beautiful, Simple and Clean home! ❤

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SB 270

“Art is a global language and plastic is a global problem.” – Aurora Robson

Just when we thought California banned single-use plastic bags for good, the plastics industry started gathering signatures to repeal the ban which would delay it until fall 2016 and introduce 17 billion more plastic bags into the state greatly threatening wildlife in the sea and on land.

I am introducing a new way to educate and inspire people not only to keep plastic bags banned but to clean up the ones already plaguing our shores, and I need your help to do it!

 

“Art is a global language and plastic is a global problem.” – Aurora Robson

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Fantastic Plastic!

 

In the beginning I was scared, terrified actually. Overwhelmed and fearful of what all this human generated waste was doing to our planet.

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I feared the obsession with consumerism and fast trends.

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I feared plastic waste contaminating the world’s waterways and Oceans, the lifeblood of the Earth’s ecosystems.

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I was scared that everything would collapse before my eyes before we could design a healthy future for all.

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We all fear something. The best thing to do about fear is to face it head on. Immerse yourself in the fear and surround it with infinite love. Fall head over heals with your fear. Thats the one true way to conquer it and fear is the one true thing to be conquered.

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I have fallen in love with the most disgusting petrochemical material in the world. It bright colors, smooth touch, shapes, shades and sizes.

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I love it so entirely that I clean it, give it value and transform it into beauty and light!

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❤ Plastic ❤

XOXO Sarah Bellum

JAKE DUCEY