Alum Darrell Blatchley (Grad ’98) spoke to Year 13 students about the impact of plastic waste on the environment. Darrell is passionate about this issue, having spent years working in the field of marine conservation. He spoke about the devastating effects that plastic pollution is having on marine life, particularly on whales, dolphins and sea turtles. Darrell is the owner and founder of a bone museum, a non-governmental organisation located in Davao, Philippines that promotes awareness about environmental conservation.
Darrell’s D’Bone Collector Museum was named a UNESCO Plastic Initiative Award Winner in September 2019 for its ongoing public awareness activities on the effects of plastic and improper waste disposal. Darrell made world headlines a few years ago when he attended a necropsy on a dead whale found with 40kg of plastic bags in its belly. Darrell showed Year 13 students some of his field work videos of marine wildlife that have been affected by plastic waste, as well as footage of whales that have been killed by plastic waste and turtles and dolphins that have had their stomachs filled with plastic. Darrell urged the students to take action to reduce the amount of plastic they use. He also encouraged students to “use the resources that you were given growing up” and to “follow your passion and your dreams. Live with purpose and don’t waste the time you have been given.”
Darrell’s talk was very informative and Year 13 students were both engaged and interested to learn more about the impact of plastic waste on the environment.
Did you know? In the photo above, Darrell is wearing a crocodile tooth necklace. Crocodiles continue to lose their teeth throughout their life. They get rid of the old ones and replace them with new teeth. Darrells necklace is from a 13 ft. size crocodile from Cagayan De Oro, Philippines.