“By 2050, the oceans will contain more plastic than fish by weight” Plastic Pollution Coalition.
The Planet is experiencing an environmental crisis. The sea’s are being ‘choked to death by human waste’. And scientists have calculated that we are dumping over 8 million tonnes of plastic into our oceans every year.
“Plastic is a substance the earth cannot digest” Plastic Pollution Coalition.
You’ve all seen and heard of the current BBC TV series, Blue Planet II, the wildlife documentaries exploring life in our seas and life the ocean bed, with the legendary sir David Attenborough narrating.
And yet disturbingly the series shows evidence of plastic that has flowed into ocean waters, thousands of miles from land, and albatrosses unwittingly feeding their chicks plastic. All caught on camera, shown to the nation. One silver lining in this very heavy black cloud is the responsibility felt by the tv crews.
We need to be held responsible. And we need to take action. Now.
It comes after Attenborough called for the world to cut back on its use of plastic in order to protect oceans at the premiere of Blue Planet II.
“Plastic pollution is when plastic has gathered in an area (of land or sea) and has begun to negatively impact the natural environment and create problems for plants, wildlife and even human population.” Conserve Energy Future.
US scientists have calculated the total amount of plastic ever made is 8.3 billion tonnes, and the astonishing mass of material has essentially only been created in the last 65 years or so.
Did you know? It takes 500-1,000 years for plastic to degrade.
Plastic is at our fingertips all day every day. Plastic keyboard, plastic water bottle, plastic phone case. We have developed a “disposable” lifestyle and estimates are that around 50% of plastic is used just once and thrown away. Plastic is an epidemic.
“No water, no life. No blue, no green.” Dr. Sylvia Earle, Plastic Oceans
A Guardian investigation established that consumers around the world buy a million plastic bottles a minute, creating an environmental crisis some campaigners predict will be as serious as climate change.
Yesterday, nations agreed that the world needs to completely stop plastic waste from entering the oceans.
Environmentalists say ministers are starting to take plastic waste more seriously, but need to move much more quickly.
But what can you do?
- Replace disposable plastics with reusable. Buy a water bottle once, reuse it. Buy a bag for life, reuse it.
- Boycott microbeads. Those little plastic scrubbers found so many beauty products – face scrubs, body wash, toothpaste. They might look harmless, but their tiny size allows them to slip through water-treatment plants. Opt for products with natural exfoliants, like oatmeal, sugar or salt, instead.
- Recycle (duh). As much as you can, check out your local councils policies to make sure you’re following the correct scheme. Remember: if there is one incorrect item in the wrong place, the whole box/bag gets thrown into rubbish. If you don’t have a recycling scheme, find your nearest supermarket.
Top tip! Next time you see plastic litter on the floor, or bottles lying on a beach, take them home with you and recycle them! Take a look at your nearest beach clean up here!
4. Put pressure on local councils, national government and manufactures. These are the key bodies who hold the power to make a bigger change. By inputting your contribution you are helping to reduce our plastic pollution.
If you need some inspiration to get yourself going, check out Boyan Slats plastic catching solution or buy a 4Ocean bracelet made from one pound of plastic pulled from the sea.