Penguin Life to release anti-plastic guide

Penguin Life to release anti-plastic guide

Penguin Life is publishing a guide to giving up plastic from Greenpeace UK’s head of oceans. 

How to Give Up Plastic by Will McCallum will be published in hardback and e-book on 27th September 2018, priced £12.99. Emily Robertson, editorial director for Penguin Life, bought world rights from the author directly.

The guide will be packed with the latest research, tips and anecdotes from scientists in the field and success stories from local communities around the world to show people what they can do in their own homes, communities and workplaces to tackle our dependency on plastics.

It follows the success of the BBC’s "Blue Planet II" series last year which attracted 14 millions viewers and brought to public consciousness the statistic that up to 12.7 million tonnes of plastic are entering the ocean every year, killing over one million seabirds and 100,000 marine mammals. By 2050 there could be more plastic in the ocean than fish by weight, it revealed. As a result, in January, the search term “how to reduce plastic waste” was up 500% year-on-year in the UK, according to Penguin Life.

Advice in McCallum's book ranges from basic pointers, such as using a reusable keep cup for your morning coffee, to lesser-known hacks like using a washbag in your washing machine to catch some of the mircofibres released from your clothes. It will also guide readers on how to put pressure on companies and governments to make the wide-ranging reductions to plastic-use that are going to make the biggest difference.

As part of publishing this book, Penguin Random House UK is investigating its production process in an attempt to remove as much plastic as possible from the production of this book.

Robertson said she was "incredibly proud" to be publishing the book, with even those determined to make a change and cut back on plastic usage facing what can feel like "a very large mountain to climb".

"Plastic has infiltrated every single area of our modern life and even a simple trip to the supermarket can be a minefield," she said. "I cannot think of anyone better to guide readers through that minefield than Will; his knowledge, passion and commitment to preserving our planet is unmatchable."

With more and more people waking up to the challenge, McCallum said the book was about asking a common question: "What can I do to help?"

“From the boardrooms of the world’s largest companies to the debating chambers of parliaments across the globe – it seems like everywhere people are waking up to the challenge to reduce the amount of plastic we’re producing, and it’s about time. No one wants to live in a world where you can’t take a walk on the beach without coming across plastic; a world in which we are worried about plastic ending up in the food on our plate," he said. 

"In the years I have spent campaigning to reduce plastic pollution, the most commonly asked question by friends, family and colleagues is ‘What can I do to help?’ This book is about to answer that question – change begins at home and in your community, we can all play our part in protecting our ocean from plastic.”