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  1. ITV Report

West Country leading the way to reduce plastic pollution

85% are concerned about the impact of plastic pollution on our environment.

The West Country is leading the way in a bid to cut plastic pollution with over 50% of people now using reusable water bottles.

New research carried out by One Poll has shown that 85% of people in the region are really concerned about the impact on our environment.

But what have people been doing to make a difference?

Boston Tea Party, founded in Bristol, now only serves drinks in reusable cups. Credit: ITV News West Country

Boston Tea Party, which was founded in Bristol, now only serves drinks in reusable cups. They were the first independent coffee chain in the UK to ban the sale of single-use cups.

Bristol now has more than 400 locations when people can fill up their water bottles for free. Bristol Water have been supporting the scheme since it launched in 2015.

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The Refill Bristol scheme launched in September 2015. Credit: ITV News West Country

New marine conservation zones have been designated in and around the South West Coast. The 14 areas will protect rare or threatened marine habitats and species.

North-West of Lundy Island has been selected as one of the South West Zones. Credit: ITV News West Country

Endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh swam 330 miles from Land's End to Dover in just 49 days to raise awareness of the problems are oceans are facing. He was the first person to achieve the feat without use of a wetsuit and flippers.

Cal Major from Westward Ho! in Devon also decided to paddleboard from the tip of Cornwall to the most northerly point in Scotland. It took her two months and she spent up to 18 hours a day on the board.

Lewis Pugh was stung by countless jellyfish during his swim. Credit: The Long Swim
Cal Major was raising awareness of the discarded plastic washing up on our beaches. Credit: James Appleton Photography

Regular beach clean-up's have been taking place across the region but one group in Cornwall decided to take a stand.

Members of the Friends of Portheras Cove community group hung out more than 60 items of abandoned clothing on a beach to raise awareness of the risks they pose to wildlife.

She kept a video diary each day. Credit: ITV News West Country

Ahead of World Ocean Day even our presenter Kylie Pentelow took on a 7 day challenge to record the amount of plastic she was using. The results certainly took her by surprise.