So much has happened since being accepted as crew for Leg 1 of the eXXpedition trip. Support within my local community and the boarder archaeology community for public outreach on single-use plastic research has been overwhelming. To read more about the trip from Plymouth, England, to the Azores, visit https://exxpedition.com/voyage/plymouth-to-the-azores/ You can also meet the women I will be sailing with, women who are ocean conservationists, who organize beach clean-ups in their local communities, and documentary filmmakers! I'll be looking at the refuse in the ocean from my background as an historical archaeologist, seeing what consumer behaviors can be gleaned from the material culture of single-use plastic. I'm unbelievably excited!
Here is more on eXXpedition's science program:
"The eXXpedition Round the World science programme will carry out research at sea and on land. The research conducted during the mission has been designed to advance a better understanding of the plastics issue as a whole and to work with industry to pinpoint solutions and policy at a global level by addressing knowledge-gaps and delivering evidence to inform effective solutions. The science programme is being led by Dr. Winnie Courtene-Jones, eXXpedition Science Lead,University of Plymouth. It has been developed with ocean plastic experts Professor Richard Thompson OBE Head of the International Marine Litter Research Unit at the University of Plymouth, and Professor Jenna Jambeck, Associate Professor in the College of Engineering at the University of Georgia, and is supported by the eXXpedition Science Advisory Board which includes a mix of leading academics and industry representatives including Dr Daniel Schwaab TOMRA Senior Vice-President for Circular Economy Strategy."
When I return, my job will be to share what I've learned in my community and in my profession. I'm asking your help in funding this journey, which combines my profession and my passion, while also helping me move beyond the fear of cancer that has limited me. The purpose of eXXpedition is to find ways to that supports all of us now, as well as future generations. For a local article about my background and eXXpedition, visit: http://www.ledger.news/in_the_game/jackson-woman-headed-out-to-sea-on-research-mission/article_1bb7a71e-c2af-11e9-9b51-db3a84057795.html For more about eXXpedition's mission and round-the-world journey please see: https://exxpedition.com/expedition/round-the-world/
I've also now had three opportunities to sail, but my first trip, from Monterey to Santa Cruz, has taught me the most. I learned that that above all, the ocean requires our respect. And that even in moments of absolute fear, the ocean remains mysterious and beautiful and profound. We need to treat the gifts that she has given us much more wisely. The 70-foot ketch I'll be traveling on has been newly rechristened the S.V. TravelEdge. She'll be taking 300 women around the world! http://exxpedition.com/boat/
Since starting this campaign, I've met with students at local schools so I can learn directly from the kids how they would tackle single-use plastics; made commitments to speak at international archaeological conferences on the material cultural of plastic; and spoken with amazing women locally, including Kat Everitt, host of Everywoman's Hour, in our generous foothill community: https://www.facebook.com/EverywomansHourKQBM
If you'd like to join me in person for a fundraiser and send off, come to Baker Street West in Jackson, September 28th from 6 to 9, for some nom noms, an art auction, and best of all, Wicked Sisters! https://www.facebook.com/events/764106020685070/
- Laurell Millheim