The New Zealand-born actor and stunt man is in Rarotonga with his crew as they travel from Los Angeles to Auckland, visiting a number of Pacific Islands along the way.
The message is “Eat Less Plastic” and it’s all to do with the alarming amount of plastic that is finding its way into the world’s oceans and which Somerville said is making them ‘sick’.
“Me and my crew are doing this, because the situation is so much worse than I originally thought. And because I have a couple of kids, I want to make sure that they, in years to come, can enjoy the ocean like I did.
“It however is not just a problem here in the Pacific, it is something that needs addressing globally to ensure that we can help reduce the amount of plastic we are consuming.”
The journey is aimed at reducing plastic waste by filming a documentary and collecting data while the team travels across the Pacific Ocean.
Talking to students at Titikaveka College on Wednesday, Somerville urged the youngsters to start making conscious choices about their personal use of plastic.
“It can really be as simple as saying no to a straw. When you go out somewhere and they bring you a straw or offer you a straw, say ‘no, it will end up killing the turtles’.
“You then might get them to also re-think their use of plastic along the way.”
Travelling with Somerville is Campbell Farrell, who also spoke to the students about his work in Hawaii to help rid beaches and waterways of plastic.
Also attending the presentation were Alanna Smith and Liam Kokaua from Te Ipukarea Society, with Smith showcasing a snippet of a documentary she made following a TIS team’s recent trip to Suwarrow.
Part of the presentation involved a quick question competition, with Somerville and Farrell handing out a t-shirt and a couple of hats to students who gave the correct answers.
Somerville and his team are scheduled to leave Rarotonga for Niue at the end of the month.