SHORELINE: The Paddle against Plastic, a documentary by A Greener Future

Shoreline A Greener Future Paddle against Plastics documentary film
Global Partner

SHORELINE: The Paddle against Plastic, a documentary created by Canadian non-profit A Greener Future, highlights the intersection between recreational use of waterways like stand up paddling and environmental stewardship. The film showcases the impact of one person who – with determination – makes a difference through action and education.

Toronto skyline Shoreline A Greener Future stand up paddling
Rochelle Byrne and friend Talia Masse Dowd paddle past the Toronto skyline as part of Rochelle’s paddle for A Greener Future to raise awareness about plastic pollution in Lake Ontario.

SHORELINE: The Paddle against Plastic: In this newly released documentary by Canadian non-profit A Greener Future,  we are taken on a journey where we can see a better world for tomorrow. In Shoreline, Rochelle Byrne, Executive Director and founder of A Greener Future, completes the arduous task of stand up paddling across Lake Ontario – a distance of 430KM – during COVID restrictions in order to continue her non-profit’s message for reducing plastic waste and preventing it from becoming shoreline debris.

Canadian Non-Profit: A Greener Future Gives Back to Lake Ontario

SHORELINE:  The Paddle against Plastic was filmed and edited by AGF team members Chelsea Brash and Paul Whitaker. The documentary showcases the vulnerability of Lake Ontario and teaches us, no matter what body of water we discuss, how we can do better by reducing our own plastic consumption.

A Greener Future hosts 100 beach cleanups each year along the shores of Lake Ontario. In 2020 COVID restrictions made it difficult to host any gatherings and the program risked faltering for the year. However, with technology in hand and Rochelle’s passion for paddle boarding, the group decided to make the beach cleanups a virtual experience while they charted Rochelle’s progress across the Great Lake. The documentary simultaneously recaps Rochelle’s paddle and the important cleanup work being done along the shoreline on her way.

Shoreline A Greener Future volunteer litter clean up
Along the shore, while Rochelle paddled Lake Ontario, AGF volunteers held socially distant beach cleanups and analysis to maintain AGF’s Love Your Lake program.

Protect Against Single Use Plastic on the Great Lakes

Did you know that Lake Ontario provides drinking water for over 9 million people? It also offers recreational activities and income for those who depend on this water for work. Rochelle’s purpose in paddling from Kingston on the eastern shore of Lake Ontario to the Canadian side of Niagara-on-the-Lake was to raise awareness through engaging the shoreline communities who are all connected by one important factor: the lake. Lake Ontario is also the final stop into which each of the Great Lakes feeds. Therefore, plastics from upstream in one lake can travel through the watershed to find their way into Lake Ontario and the Atlantic beyond.

Shoreline A Greener Future Starboard cup in water
Garbage discarded on one of the upper Great Lakes has the potential to travel to Lake Ontario which acts as a feeder for all the Great Lakes. The next stop is the Atlantic Ocean beyond. What we do affects more than just our own backyard.

Education: Paddle against Plastics to Preserve Marine Life

Shoreline: The Paddle against Plastic educates its viewers through both narrative and compelling imagery about how actions and behaviors in one region can impact another hundreds of miles away. A Greener Future advocates that litter cleanups, such as the kind the team put together along the shoreline of Rochelle’s lengthy journey, are necessary until long term solutions are reached. The film makes abundantly clear the path of any single use plastic item and how it breaks down into smaller components when it becomes a primary target for bird and marine life to ingest, thinking it is a food source. This impacts more than just water quality.

nordles A Paddle against Plastic Shoreline A Greener Future Canada
Nurdles are small plastic pellets used in manufacturing to produce new plastic items. They can spill into waterways, polluting the water and endangering wildlife who may mistake them as food.

Protect What You Love & Participate in Preservation Efforts

Narrated by an enthusiastic Rochelle Byrne, and a highly informed and boots-on-the-ground AGF Communications Coordinator, Chelsea Brash, the documentary educates us about various ways we can all become stewards for our local watersheds in order to protect the environment.

One of the strongest points in the film is to point out how each of us: stand up paddlers, surfers, kiters, swimmers and water-based recreation seekers spend time enjoying our local waterways and oceans. This enjoyment leads to a deeper appreciation for the vulnerability of nature. It is vital for recreational water users to be actively concerned and informed as to the health of our local waterways. We will then teach others that same appreciation by sharing what we love, the water. Until we can solve the single use plastic crisis, water lovers everywhere are responsible for exploring, charting and categorizing local watersheds, offering cleanups and educating ourselves and others about what plastic items we can resolve to get rid of in our daily lives.

Prevention is the best method for recovery. Leave local waterways better than how you found them for future generations to enjoy them too!

Be inspired by the film yourself in an exclusive online screening on
April 1st, 2021 @7PM EST including special Q&A with Rochelle Byrne.
Tickets are being sold on a sliding scale with a suggested $10 donation. 

Rochelle Byrne A Greener Future Starboard
Rochelle Byrne, founder of A Greener Future, takes her work onto Lake Ontario to hold virtual and actual beach cleanups to motivate people to take a stand against plastic use.

Advance Online Screening of Shoreline: April 1st, 2021

A Greener Future will host an exclusive online screening of Shoreline on April 1st, 2021. Tickets are now available. All proceeds directly benefit A Greener Future’s Love Your Lake program and cleanups for 2021. Your ticket price will help in facilitating cleaner shores.

TICKET SALES for Advance Screening
benefit AGF’s Love Your Lake 2021 cleanup program

Who wants to start one in their own backyard?  I know I do.  Thanks, A Greener Future.

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Evelyn O'Doherty, editor & publisher of the new Standup Journal 2.0 is a former school teacher gone rogue. She left her career as a teacher in order to spend more time near or on the water after learning to surf turned her life around (upsidedown?). She is a year-round surfer and paddler living on the eastern tip of Long Island in NY who is a certified SUP instructor, seasoned SUP racer and avid longboard surfer. Evelyn was hired as Online Editor to Standup Journal in 2016. Her passion for the project quickly led to her success and eventually taking over the mag herself in Oct. 2018. Today, as editor, publisher and chief bottle washer at Standup Journal, Evelyn keeps her toes wet writing, traveling, paddling, surfing, and learning to foil. You can find her most days paddling out on Gardiner's Bay or surfing Ditch Plains in Montauk, NY.