A brave woman from Merton is one of four that are training to row across the pacific to campaign against plastic pollution and to break a world record in the process.

The rowers will be taking up their challenge in June 2018 as part of the Great Pacific Race - a row from California to Hawaii to highlight the importance of taking action now to reduce plastic waste.

Emma Rogers, from Merton, is a 'community champion' for Sustainable Merton will row with friends Mariana, who is also based in London, and Lindsay and Eliza, who are based in the US.

Sustainable Merton’s new #PlasticFreeMerton campaign will seek to support residents in reducing the amount of plastic waste they produce and will launch in January 2018.

Emma said: “My passion is to reduce the prolific use of single-use plastic which contaminate our oceans and rowing through the north Pacific Gyre will give me the first-hand experience of just how serious the problem is.

“The monetary cost of the row is high, equivalent to a house deposit per crew member, but the cost of not raising awareness is even greater.”

With 37 years rowing experience between them, Emma and Mariana will be training on the Thames.

Their challenge of the pacific will see them rowing for 12 hours every day and will live on the 24ft boat for the entire journey with no motor, no sail and no help.

Emma said: “We will have extensive training, but anything that goes wrong on the boat we have to fix ourselves. It’s a big challenge, but the challenges of plastic pollution and climate change are even greater.”