Study Finds Rising Levels of Plastics in Oceans – So what we can do to reduce plastic waste?
Some eight million metric tons of plastic waste makes its way into the world’s oceans each year, and the amount of the debris is likely to increase greatly over the next decade unless nations take strong measures to dispose of their trash responsibly, new research suggests. Worldwide, consumers use an estimated 1 trillion plastic bags each year—nearly 2 million a minute—with the use time of a typical bag just 12 minutes. The problem is more than an aesthetic one: Exposed to saltwater and sun, and the jostling of the surf, the debris shreds into tiny pieces that become coated with toxic substances like PCBs and other pollutants.
Research into the marine food chain suggests that fish and other organisms consume the bite-size particles and may reabsorb the toxic substances. Those fish are eaten by other fish, and by people. This is bad news.
So what we can do? So ideas:
- Support governments and businesses to regulate against plastic use. There is evidence that bag bans and taxes can cut down on some of this waste #banplastic
- Support research on local scale and identify local problems about waste management. Waste management on local scale can help local communities to understand the problem and find solutions.
- Provide educational material and trainings to younger generations, communities and business about the use of plastics and recycling techniques
- Set zero waste targets to business and their supply chain #zerowaste
- Think sustainable.
- Say no to straws – One of the easiest ways to keep plastic out of the landfill is to refuse plastic straws. Simply inform your waiter or waitress that you don’t need one, and make sure to specify this when ordering at a drive-thru.