ABOUT THE INITIATIVE
The “Plastic free Zlarin” initiative started in the summer 2018, run by volunteers of La Révolution Albatros organization and with strong support of the local community – the tourism board, local authorities and businesses. Its aim was to make Zlarin the first single-use plastic* free island in Croatia and to inspire other communities to undertake the necessary changes leading to a more sustainable life.
As well as restricting the use of single-use plastic on the island (two years ahead of the deadline set by the European SUP Disposable Plastic Directive), other aims of the initiative are to promote composting, a low waste lifestyle and generally raise awareness about our waste footprint, plastic pollution, biodiversity and sustainable living.
The idea for the initiative developed over summer 2018, when it became obvious how much single-use plastic waste is produced during the summer.
La Révolution Albatros, in partnership with the Tourism office, organised a highly-attended screening of the documentary "Plastic Ocean" and the first successful plastic-free concert was held – by "Andreja, Rundek and Ftičeki", for which CupUp System from Pazin sent reusable cups. These two events proved that there is an interest to do things differently.
With the support and encouragement of local businesses and authorities (which ensured the possibility of implementing this initiative in the local community), Ana Robb wrote the project “Plastic free Zlarin” and submitted it to the Adriatic Plastic Challenge. After joining forces with Ivana Kordić and Nataša Kandijaš and participating in a bootcamp organised for seven best teams, the all-female Zlarin team won the first prize!
Following the Adriatic Plastic Challenge, the team worked on searching for alternative suppliers, creating educational materials for locals and tourists and making an agreement with local businesses and associations about the use of alternative products. In March 2019, all local stakeholders signed a Charter for Zlarin without Plastic, in which they committed to:
abide by the oral agreement on the non-use of disposable plastics in their business and
prominently display a poster and logo "Plastic free Zlarin" and support and promote the initiative during all cultural and entertainment events in Zlarin.
Various information and educational materials (leaflets, information panel on the Zlarin waterfront) have been designed for the summer season.
Tourists and locals enjoyed a variety of educational workshops (composting, basket weaving, veggie bag sewing, story making…) as well as the first eco film festival.
The beginning of the summer season was marked with the release of the educational video '' Take a break from plastic! ''. Its aim is to raise public awareness about the existence and magnitude of the marine plastic pollution problem and simple every day solutions to fight it.
The initial financial support was provided by Volvo Cars Adria and followed by many others - the Embassies of United Kingdom, France, SMILO program, Krka national park.