Premiere Screening of Sea Shepherd’s new film ‘Untrashing Djulpan'

Wednesday, Sep 11, 2019

Over 150 people attended the Premiere Screening of ‘Untrashing Djulpan’, a new Sea Shepherd film last Thursday evening in Perth at the WA Maritime Museum.

The film exposes the devastating impact that plastic pollution is having on Djulpan Beach in the Gulf of Carpentaria in Northeast Arnhem Land, NT and the two-week long remote clean-up carried out in partnership between the Dhimurru Aboriginal Corporation and Sea Shepherd.

Each year, Rangers from the Dhimurru Aboriginal Corporation are faced with increasing amounts of plastic washing ashore along the 70 kilometres of coastline that their Indigenous Protected Area covers. 

Sea Shepherd Australia’s Managing Director, Jeff Hansen kicked off the screening by introducing Noongar Elder, Uncle Ben Taylor who conducted a special Welcome to Country. This was followed by informative speeches by Yolgnu Cultural Advisor and Deputy Chair of Dhimurru, Lirrpiya Mununggurr and Ranger Yama Banu providing context on the work that they do on country, their cultural values and what plastic pollution is doing to their sacred places and cultural homelands.

Ranger Yama told the audience that songlines are an important part of their culture, but there are no songlines for plastic whilst Lirrpiya shared the cultural significance of Djulpan to the Yolgnu people and where their story of the Seven Sisters originates from.

Sea Shepherd’s Arnhem Campaign Leader Liza Dicks was next on stage telling the story how the collaboration with Dhimurru came about and then introduced the film.

The film revealed for the very first time that 7.1 tonnes of marine debris was removed from Djulpan by the Rangers and ten Sea Shepherd volunteer crew, with around 90% of items being plastic. The crew conducted scientific surveys across the 14 kilometre stretch of beach with the results concluding an estimated 250 million pieces of marine plastic present.

With the screening over it was time for Ranger Yama, Lirrpiya and Liza to be joined by Sea Shepherd film maker Eliza Muirhead and campaign crew member Marina Hansen in Q&A session.

The audience was keen to further understand the issue, asked how they could be part of the solution, wanted to know what the Dhimurru Rangers needed in terms of resources and outcomes to help them. A highlight of the Q&A was when Ranger Yama broke into a rap song dedicated to his work as a Ranger and what the plastic inundation means to him:

“All this rubbish polluting our nation ….

Purity of the water has been wasted ….

Protecting our ocean is everyone’s job …..

Our culture is strong … like the ocean

Gonna stay true and follow its motion

The following day Ranger Yama, Lirrpiya and Sea Shepherd’s Eliza and Marina screened Untrashing Djulpan to the very first school group in Australia with 250 students from Fremantle College in South Fremantle the first to see it. The students heard first-hand from Ranger Yama how marine plastic pollution is not only affecting their beaches but hurting marine life and their culture.

We would sincerely like to thank Lirrpiya Mununggurr and Yama Banu for travelling all the way from Northeast Arnhem Land to be part of these special events and to the entire Dhimurru team for the opportunity to come together in partnership for the oceans and marine life.

“All of us together, looking after country” “Ŋilmurru bukmak djäka wäŋawu”

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