NYU Abu Dhabi’s fourth Great Nurdle Hunt brings the community together to collect nearly 24,000 nurdles

NYU Abu Dhabi’s fourth Great Nurdle Hunt brings the community together to collect nearly 24,000 nurdles

The activity attracted over 250 volunteers from the University and the broader community

Abu Dhabi, November 9, 2019: NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) Community Outreach organized its fourth Great Nurdle Hunt, which attracted over 250 volunteers on Saturday, November 9 in a unique variation of a beach clean-up at Jumeirah at Saadiyat Island Resort, Abu Dhabi.

Volunteers collected thousands of nurdles, which are tiny plastic pellets used in the manufacturing of plastic products, that end up in the ocean due to spills and mishandling during transport, causing harm to marine life.

Organized as part of The Great Nurdle Hunt worldwide initiative, the event seeks to promote awareness of more environmentally conscious behaviors and foster greater environmental stewardship.

Commenting on the event, Associate Director of Community Outreach at NYUAD Suparna Mathur said: “Our oceans do so much more for us than we realize – providing half the oxygen we need and freshwater we depend on. These life-giving oceans are in deep trouble due to marine pollution such as plastic, and we can no longer ignore the harmful effects our behaviors are having. The NYUAD Nurdle Hunt events are our way of catalyzing community action to protect our planet.”

Volunteers spent the morning collecting nurdles at the Jumeirah at Saadiyat Island Resort beach. They also attended an informative briefing, by NYUAD’s Community Outreach, along with the resort’s Marine and Environment Manager Emily Armstrong, where they were encouraged to start their own nurdle hunts and reduce their plastic consumption, especially single-use plastics.

Speaking after the nurdle hunt, Emily Armstrong said: “We are delighted to be working with NYUAD and be a part of its community outreach program. Having seen the impact that nurdles can have on the marine wildlife on Saadiyat Island first hand, it is important to collect these nurdles and make the community aware of these issues. The fact that we managed to collect nearly 24,000 nurdles today shows that when communities come together, they can really make an impact. It is great to know that everyone here is empowered and will hopefully leave here with a sense of achievement and responsibility for the environment around us.”

Data from the day was shared with Fidra, a UK based environmental charity that harnesses citizen science to address a wide range of environmental issues by promoting genuinely sustainable practices, using approaches that are dynamic and responsive.

For more information about volunteering and community outreach at NYUAD please visit the website.


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