By John McPhaul
This week at the world’s biggest Afrobeats music festival, Olympic gold medalist Jasmine Camacho-Quinn is partnering with Afro Nation and biodegradable plastic firm Lyfecycle to fight plastic pollution in the festival scene.
“As a passionate advocate for protecting our oceans, and fighting plastic pollution, Jasmine is delighted to be coming together with Afro Nation and the local community for a beach cleanup in Puerto Rico on the morning of Tuesday, March 22,” Lyfecycle said in a press release. “She will be leading the beach cleanup from 9 a.m. today with local experts Scuba Dogs, who have removed over 43,000 pounds of plastic from Puerto Rican beaches.”
In the days leading up to the Afro Nation music festival starting Thursday in Carolina, Lyfecycle, the festival organizers, Scuba Dogs Society (SDS) and Camacho-Quinn will host a beach cleanup in La Pocita, Loíza today.
The Party for the Planet Beach Cleanup is part of this year’s campaign platform at Afro Nation, where Lyfecycle’s unique reusable, recyclable and fully biodegradable cups will be showcased.
The Party for the Planet Beach Cleanup event is an open invitation to all: festival attendees, members of the local community, school kids of all ages who are passionate about ocean protection .
“Our generation is tired of seeing microplastics pollute our beautiful oceans, we’re ready to stand up, get outside, and be a part of the solution,” Camacho-Quinn said. “Whether you love music, athletics, or simply have an appreciation for the outdoors, the oceans are ours to protect, and this is a chance to make a difference.”
The Lyfecycle cups served at the festival, while fully recyclable, are time-set to biodegrade after only one year. The innovative technology in the cups kicks in if they escape the recycling system environment and will transform into an earth-friendly wax in an open environment. When taken to scale, the product has the potential to be a solution for the 450 million tons of plastic estimated to enter the oceans by 2040.
“The Beach Cleanup is part of Afro Nation’s efforts to double-down on our sustainability goals,” said Afro Nation founder and CEO Obi Asika. “This year we’re taking a multi-tiered approach to increase impact and awareness. We’re using music to show the world that we can care for our planet and have a lot of fun doing it.”
“The average music festival can generate up to six pounds of plastic waste per person every day,” said Liepa Olsauskaite, head of Lyfecycle Brand Activations. “We see music festivals as a key opportunity to showcase what our technology can do, and reach a new generation of changemakers.”
“When Afro Nation and Lyfcycle approached us to collaborate, it was music to our ears,” said Irma “Mimi” Ruiz, SDS’s interim executive director & board president. “We believe that in order to enact real change, each one of us needs to uncover our capacity to be part of the solution and join a variety of communities to take part in the effort.”
SDS has been leading beach cleanups for two decades. Thousands of tons of plastic waste get dumped on Puerto Rico’s coasts every year. Beach pollution includes plastic bottles, plastic bags and packaging, food wrappers and cigarette butts – detracting from the natural beauty of the shore, harming wildlife and human health.