2.5 tonne ocean plastic sculpture installed on doorstep of Coca-Cola HQ

Publication date: 10th April 2017

Monday 10th April, 2017. London – This morning Greenpeace activists have installed a 2.5 tonne ocean plastic sculpture on the doorstep of Coca-Cola’s London HQ, in protest at the company’s role in ocean plastic pollution.

The artwork, Plasticide, was created by renowned underwater sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor and features seabirds regurgitating plastic amidst a family beach picnic. Up to 12.7 million tonnes of plastic enters the sea every year, and plastic bottles and bottle tops form a major source of the plastic packaging found washed up on the world’s shorelines. But major companies like Coca-Cola are failing to take meaningful action.

Activists are currently outside Coca-Cola’s London HQ – on Wimpole Street, near Oxford Circus (map) – where the sculpture has been adorned with tonnes of sand and waste Coca-Cola bottles, representing the company’s impact on our oceans.

“Coca-Cola produces over 100 billion single-use plastic bottles every year, and billions of these are ending up on beaches, in landfill and in oceans around the world,” said Louise Edge, senior oceans campaigner at Greenpeace UK. “But rather than dramatically reducing its plastic footprint, Coke is actually increasing its use of throwaway plastic bottles, which is polluting our oceans and being ingested by everything from seabirds to turtles.”

“90% of seabirds have been found to have ingested plastic. Coca-Cola may want us to “Taste the Feeling,” but marine life shouldn’t have to. Coca-Cola is trying to ignore the impact its plastic is having on our environment, so we’ve installed a monument to their role in ocean plastic pollution on their doorstep, to force them to confront the issue. This artwork weighs 2.5 tonnes, but every minute plastic weighing 10 times that is pouring into the sea. Our oceans simply can’t stomach any more of Coca-Cola’s plastic.”

A report released today by Greenpeace found that Coca-Cola produces over 100 billion throwaway plastic bottles every year and that the company’s use of single-use plastic bottles is rising. The report also found that Coca-Cola has failed to meet its own sustainability targets and is now restricting information it discloses on its product packaging. Despite telling its customers to recycle, globally Coke uses an average of just 7% recycled content in its plastic bottles.

Louise Edge continued:

“Coca-Cola is choking our oceans. It’s time Coke took responsibility for its plastic footprint, commits to ditch throwaway plastic and embraces reusable packaging. In the meantime, there’s no excuse for its bottles not to be made from 100% recycled content, not the miserable 7% it currently averages globally.”

Notes to editors

For further information, interviews and comments, contact the Greenpeace UK press office: press.uk@greenpeace.org / 020 7865 8255 / 07500 866 860