A NEW vessel battling to clean up plastic pollution in Britain’s waterways is to visit Dalmuir this week.

The ‘Poly Roger’ set sail on the Forth and Clyde canal at the Falkirk Wheel on Tuesday and is due to arrive at Dalmuir on Friday before sailing on to Bowling.

The boat will take local people out on ‘plastic fishing’ trips to raise awareness of the growing levels of plastic pollution in Scottish rivers and canals and to encourage more people to recycle their used plastic. 

Built from plastic collected on previous plastic fishing trips, the Poly Roger is spearheading plans to build a litter-busting fleet across the UK.

Scottish Canals will be supporting the delivery of the fishing trips and will also be organising paddle pick-ups along the route to target litter in the canal.

The initiative has come from environmental group Hubbub and has been funded from Starbucks’ 5p charge on drinks purchased in a paper cup across its 950 stores nationwide.  

It’s only the third boat of its kind in the world and the first to launch outside of London.

The Poly Roger started its tour in Manchester at the end of April and will continue on to Birmingham and Bristol. 

Read more: Dalmuir litter pickers collect a dozen bags of rubbish

In each location Hubbub is partnering with local organisations and volunteers, who nominated their area to take part in the plastic fishing tour as part of a competition with the Daily Mirror.

Gavin Ellis, co-founder and director of Hubbub, said: “The pictures we’ve received from all over the country have shown how widespread the problem of plastic pollution is and it’s clear there is a strong desire from the public to help keep their local areas clean and safe for wildlife.

“We’ve seen the difference that plastic fishing has made in London, where we’ve taken 1,415 people out on trips and collected 162 kg from the London docklands.

“We’re really looking forward to visiting Scotland as part of our plastic fishing tour which will help clean-up local waterways, and also remind people of the importance of recycling plastics we use every day.”

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