The communication strategy of LIFE Blue Lakes, pursues several objectives including informing policy makers at local, regional and European level on actions to combat microplastics, being a reliable source of information, building awareness around cross-cutting issues of the project. This section describes the dissemination tools and materials useful to achieve the set objectives.
PROJECT BRANDING AND VISUAL IDENTITY
In collaboration with the Unik communications agency, a special logo was designed to represent the project’s mission. The logo is accompanied by a claim, a short text that completes the visual identity of the project, making it recognisable, memorable and coherent. The left side of the brand shows colors range from yellow to blue: yellow is the color dedicated to attention and is used to identify the problem highlights the urgency of the solution. On the right side, the lettering of the brand is clear and simple. The same difference in visual language is found in communication material.
The claim ‘No microplastics, Just waves’ aims to reach the final goal: the waves must not hide surprises. Blue Lakes wants to stir the waters of change, transforming the stillness of indifference image in a bigger awareness. Moreover, in English there is an idiom that says “to make waves” and its meaning is precisely to bring something new. The tone is simple because there aren’t alternatives.
The logo is contained in a branding box containing letterhead, templates for power point presentations, covers for internal reports
and the partnership logos:
INFORMATION AND PROMOTIONAL MATERIALS
The materials produced for the dissemination of the project have been produced in Italian, English and German and aim at an “off-line” communication that is always attentive to satisfy the need to narrate sensitive topics focussed on their scientific topic, which is proposed as a distinctive feature that makes any action of scientific environmentalism authoritative and credible.
Information boards displayed at the headquarter of each partner; Cardboard totems to be used during the events, each partner has two of them (one with title, logos and project partners and the second one with an infographic describing the journey of microplastics from the main sources to the lakes and a list of actions the project identifies to tackle the problem); Project roll-up for the Living Lakes travelling exhibition; Press Kit for journalists; Leaflet describing the project objectives and actions, distributed during the information and communication events organised by the project; One minute video spot describing sources and solutions to the problem of microplastics in lakes and a second one video spot that tells about concrete actions to protect lakes; Brochure which illustrates the problem of plastic and microplastic waste, the threat to the environment and human health, as well as solutions to reduce the impact of this problem; City card is a leaflet dedicated to the German public with further advice for consumers.
CHECK OUT OUR GADGETS TOO!
WEB SITE AND SOCIAL NETWORK
The LIFE Blue Lakes website has been online since April 2021 and is constantly updated with news, articles, activities in which partners are involved and news concerning microplastics and inland water protection in general. It is updated with news, insights and documents, national and international events promoted by the partners or those involved in water protection and the fight against microplastics.
The site of each partner links to lifebluelakes.eu and every time contacts are made for events or collaborations, a banner is proposed to drive traffic data to the project site
Article writing follows SEO Search Engine Optimisation to increase organic traffic to a web page.
Google Analytics is used to monitor the website. Thanks to this tool, various types of statistics can be observed such as session duration, origin of visits, number of pages visited, most viewed pages, geographic location, etc. The monitoring of the site lifebluelakes.eu has been active since 19 March 2021.
LIFE Blue Lakes communication is carried out on four social networks: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. A Facebook page dedicated to the project has been opened to create a specific container for project-related topics. As for Twitter and Instagram, Legambiente pages are used to take advantage of an existing fan base that is already aware of the project’s themes. The same applies to YouTube, where the Legambiente Onlus channel has a playlist dedicated to Blue Lakes.
Since the beginning of the project, media relations have seen different levels of action depending on the area of reference but also on the type of messages disseminated. LIFE Blue Lakes focuses on a scientific theme but aims to address different targets ranging from specialized to general public. The actions of the project can involve different languages, among which it is worth mentioning the artistic one if you think of the promotion of the show Monday, which brings to the theater the theme of microplastics and takes place within the action D.2. The tools available to the project to get in touch with the media and spread the issues to multiple targets are:
– Press releases;
– Press conferences;
Since the beginning of the project LIFE Blue Lakes publishes press releases written in collaboration with the members of the Communication Working Group.
Press conferences and presentation events, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, have seen an increase only since the summer of 2021, so it is in this period that there has been the opportunity to strengthen the relationship with journalists in the areas affected by the Italian Lakes Monitoring Campaign, the transfer activities with the Environmental Protection Agencies focused on the sampling protocol and the presentation of the Lake Papers. Updates on these activities enrich the NEWS section of the website in both English and German.
On these occasions, interviews were given by the territorial representatives involved in various ways in the project, but there were also requests for interviews in online periodicals, television programs and television news.
The communication activity produces a press review that is published periodically in this dedicated section of the site.
The news related to LIFE Blue Lakes are usually relaunched by printed and online newspapers, television and web services on channels that reach a wide audience as in Italy are Rai News 24, Repubblica, Il fatto Quotidiano or Italia 1. The articles and television reports are available not only in the press review page, but also in the VIDEO page.
The project also has an adequate response regarding the different target groups. In fact, the articles are published by publications with different editorial lines: such as sector websites dedicated to the topic of plastics, online magazines for an environmentalist audience and newspapers for readers attentive to critical consumption
SEMINARS, CONGRESSES AND CONFERENCES
18/09 LEGAMB participated at the event “Dalla lavatrice ai ghiacciai passando per il lago di Como” “Mari, laghi e spiagge di plastica”, l’impegno associativo per contrastare questa emergenza ambientale.
TO THE RECORDING
25/09 ENEA The project was presented in occasion of NET – Scienza Insieme: public event addressed to students
09/10 LEGAMB presented LIFE Blue Lakes at Life Blue Med event Towards a Healthy plastic-free Mediterranean Sea
19/10 GNF participated to a videoconference with representative of project “ConCirMy” on sustainability aspects in the tyre supply chain
27/10 LCF participated to the online event “DUH – German Returnable Systems Conference”
28/10 UNIVPM at Legambiente Onlus Water Forum presents “Linee Guida E Progetti Di Innovazione Nel Settore Idrico In Europa A Supporto Della Transizione Circolare, Ecologica E Digitale”
TO THE RECORDING
03/11 UNIVPM presented LIFE Blue Lakes project at Ecomondo within the conference “Approvvigionamento idrico sostenibile e resiliente in agricoltura: il ruolo delle grandi infrastrutture idriche e del riuso delle acque reflue depurate”.
05/11 LCF participated to the online event “Plastics-free city – how companies move forward”
27/11 Attended GNF at Lake Balaton Development Coordination Agency (LBDCA), Hungary, organizes a 24-hour long online conference marathon for the protection and sustainable management of lakes and lake basins in the world.
03/12 GNF Participated in online event “Bioplastics – What can they do? Research, fields of application and potentials”
15/12 ABDAC, LEGAMB, ENEA and UNIVPM have attended the periodic meeting of the Permanent Observatory of Central Appennine’s Water Uses.
14/01 GNF Participated in event “Marine Pollution – Models, Research & Cruises, Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research»
25/02 LCF and GNF participated to the online event “BLUE PLANET Berlin Water Dialogues: “Smart Water for Resilient Cities”.
15/04 LEGAMB Meeting with Umbria Region Networking Life Imagine
21/04 ABDAC, LEGAMB, ENEA and UNIVPM have attended the periodic meeting of the Permanent Observatory of Central Appennine’s Water Uses.
27/04 LEGAMB presented the project at the press conference of the Festival of Sustainability which will be held in May on Lake Garda and will promote the workshops for the shared writing of the Lake Paper.
TO THE RECORDING press conference 27/04/2021 – TO THE RECORDING press conference 27/05/2021
07/05 GNF and LCF: First round table took place with the participation of representatives from local communes, science, wastewater associations.
15/06 LEGAMB Scientific conference “Marine Litter: Prevention, Progress and Monitoring”, organized by the British Plastics Federation. Meeting attendance and speech. Presentation of the LIFE Blue Lakes project.
30/06 ENEA XXV Congress of AIOL – Italian Association of Oceanology and Limnology. Meeting attendance and speech.
09/07 LEGAMB Microplastiche nel cibo e bioplastica nel compost: una sfida nell’economia circolare
10/07 Lake Day Garda: Workshop “Acque dolci. Cosa c’è sotto? Ricchezza e fragilità delle acque interne italiane”(Freshwater. What lies beneath? Wealth and fragility of inland waters in Italy)
TO THE RECORDING
11/07 Lake Day Garda: Walk in the Rocca di Manerba park to the small church of San Giorgio, to discover the natural beauty of the place
13/07 Lake Day Garda: Meeting for the transfer of sampling and monitoring methodologies between ENEA, ARPA Lombardia, Legambiente. Initiative open to the press, through a dedicated press point, to citizens and associations
27/07 Lake Day Bracciano: Workshop on microplastics and monitoring activities on 22/07 at Hydra Ricerche
21/09 Online seminar of the Living Lakes Network Germany, organised by GNF, is about the pollution of European waters with microplastics and a “lakes paper”: It contains concrete examples and recommendations on how to reduce (micro)plastic consumption in municipalities.
TO THE RECORDING
24/09 LEGAMB ENEA Forum Acque Piemonte, LIFE VisPO networking
05/10 LEGAMB UNIVPM: H2O, a circular resource. Proper management, purification and reuse, innovation of industrial cycles. These are the issues at the center of the third edition of the Forum Acqua for a sustainable management of the resource.
TO THE RECORDING
17/10 GNF At Radolfzell docks to update citizens on the LIFE Blue Lakes project and ways to avoid microplastics in everyday life.
26/10 LEGAMB UNIVPM Ecomondo 2021
30/10 ENEA at Speleo Kamaraton 2021, international caving gathering: the sampling of microplastics in inland waters.
29/11 ABDAC Permanent Observatory for Water Uses: periodic meeting discussion on the project LIFE Blue Lakes – Pollution by Microplastics in inland waters: proposals for a common action.
11/12 LEGAMB ENEA Lago d’Orta Plastic Revolution
16/12 LEGAMB presents Lake Trasimeno’s Paper to URAT consortium, Trasimeno Union of restaurateurs and hoteliers
21/12 UNIVPM present Blue Lakes results to integrated water service managers hosted by Utilitalia’s Microplastics Working Group.
24/02 ENEA LAKE LAB…for a day: students and researchers at Lake Bracciano with the “HdueO an under 18 poster” project.
18/05 LCF Lecture at annual general meeting 2022 WWF Thurgau (CH): presentation “Microplastics in Lake Constance”
26/05 LEGAMB LIFE Blue Lakes presentation at the Platform Meeting of the Ministry of Ecological Transition.
20-23/06 ENEA, LEGAMB Presentation and Poster at First Symposium for YouNg Chemists: Innovation and Sustainability. Department of Chemistry of the University of Rome La Sapienza
24/06 ARPA, UNIVPM LIFE Blue Lakes Presentation at Forum delle Acque, Villalago Piediluco (TR)
11/07 ENEA LIFE Blue Lakes Presentation at Forum Acque Legambiente Piemonte, Verbania (NO)
22/09 LIFE Blue Lakes at Trieste Next, “La ricerca del futuro” documentary presentation by European Commission
12/10 LIFE Blue Lakes at Festival dello sviluppo sostenibile, “La ricerca del futuro” documentary presentation by European Commission
27/10 UNIVPM, LEGAMB Presentation in Quinto Ecoforum di Legambiente Sicilia