At work we’ve just launched a new campaign that tried to change people’s flushing behaviour of wet wipes that cause a huge environmental damage. It has been a lot of fun to put together so I thought I would share the launch blog I wrote here:
We need to talk to you about your a**hole. We know, we’re sorry!
The problem is, when trying to look after your a**hole, and the a**holes of those you love, many people are buying, using and incorrectly flushing wet wipes.
Today we’ve launched a new campaign to shine a light on the issue and find a way to tackle it.
WHAT’S SO BAD ABOUT FLUSHING WET WIPES WE HEAR YOU ASK?
Most people think wet wipes break down like toilet paper when you flush them, but they don’t!
When wet wipes are flushed down the loo, they caused huge blockages called fatbergs (which are made up of 93% of wet wipes). And it costs millions to clear up, contributing to plastic pollution in our oceans by blocking sewers and causing overspills of waste.
Wet wipes are now changing the shape of our rivers and polluting our beaches in terrifying numbers. One study found over 4,500 wet wipes on one 154m sq patch of foreshore – a rise of 700% over the last decade.
DID YOU KNOW – MOST WET WIPES ARE MADE OF PLASTIC?
The problem is, most people don’t even realise that wet wipes are mainly made up of plastic. Of the 11 billion wet wipes sold in the UK every year, 90% contain some form of plastic. The confusing packaging usually doesn’t even mention plastic!
As City to Sea’s founder, Natalie Fee says, “Let’s face it, the real a**holes are the manufacturers who are still not listing the actual material of the wipe on the ingredients list. This is making it hard for people to realise they’re potentially flushing plastic down the loo.”
Sorry to dump bad news on you like this, but it’s important and here in the UK, we don’t tend to like talking about poo, bums or anything else that happens behind that locked bathroom door (unless of course, it involves toilet humour).
BE A GOOD A**HOLE
This is why we’ve launched our new campaign – #BeAGoodAsshole. The campaign involves our very own talking a**hole, developed in partnership with Lord of The Rings actor, Andy Serkis and the creative agency Karmarama. That’s right – a very famous talking a**hole – that we hope will make a real splash!
In a short animation, our a**hole highlights the problem with flushing wet wipes and suggests that you might not need to use wet wipes in the first place.
Speaking on his involvement in the campaign, Andy Serkis explains, “All across the news we are seeing people take a stand to look after our planet. It’s time we all start taking responsibility for our actions and that starts with being a good a**hole. It’s only one tiny change we can all make which goes a long way in protecting our oceans. I didn’t think I’d ever feel so passionate to take on the role of a talking a**hole.”
HAVE A LOOK AND SEE WHAT YOU THINK.
Ultimately our talking a**hole sends you to the campaign’s microsite www.beagoddasshole.com where you can share the animation and create your own a**hole profile picture.
While we would love you to spread the word with all the a**holes you know, the biggest thing we want you to do is this – try to not use wet wipes at all (toilet roll is fine), but if you do feel the need to use wet wipes, always put them in the bin and not down the toilet.
There is a golden rule here, whenever you’re on the bog make sure you only flush the 3P’s – pee, paper and poo.
It’s simple and could help solve a really crappy plastics problem.