Hell or Clean Water

A former fisherman who just 10 years earlier thought nothing of tossing garbage out of his truck window, Shawn Bath has an epiphany when he starts diving the harbours of his native Newfoundland. He finds ocean floors covered with debris – truck tires, boat parts, fishing equipment, ghost nets, household junk and “disposable” plastics of every description. Realization quickly turns to obsession, as Shawn dedicates himself to cleaning up the rotting mess. He begins single-handedly hauling out thousands of pounds of tires and countless bags of trash, a toxic stew that is killing marine life and is surely making its way through the food chain to the human population. With no help from the government and only meagre online donations, he soon finds himself with less than $10 in his bank account, creditors calling daily and a stressed relationship with a supportive but very concerned girlfriend. But in the face of all this, the one thing that Shawn Bath never loses is hope. And that’s what makes it possible for a single person to start something that just might change the world.

Cody Westman