Plastic Pollution

Photo: Manan Vastsyayana Photo: Manan Vastsyayana

Unprecedented Plastic Pollution
When The Mermaids Cry: The Great Plastic Tide

By Claire Le Guern

The world population is living, working, vacationing, increasingly conglomerating along the coasts, and standing on the front row of the greatest, most unprecedented, plastic waste tide ever faced.

Washed out on our coasts in obvious and clearly visible form, the plastic debris spectacle blatantly unveiling on our beaches is only the prelude of the greater story that unfolded further away in the the world's oceans, yet mostly originating from where we stand: the land.

In 2008, our global plastic consumption worldwide has been estimated at 260 million tons. Plastic is versatile, lightweight, flexible, moisture resistant, strong, and relatively inexpensive. Those are the attractive qualities that lead us, around the world, to such a voracious appetite and over-consumption of plastic goods. However, durable and very slow to degrade, plastic materials that are used in the production of so many products all, ultimately, become waste with staying power. Our tremendous attraction to plastic, coupled with an undeniable behavioral propensity of increasingly over-consuming, discarding, littering and thus polluting, has become a combination of lethal nature. Read More

Oil Pollution

Treasure Island, Florida

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Oil spills on the worlds beaches and in the worlds oceans

By Linda Pilkey-Jarvis

Beaches and river shorelines all over the world are at risk from oil spills. Spills are most likely to occur while oil is transported or transferred between oil tankers, barges, pipelines, refineries, and distribution or storage facilities. Spills may also occur during natural disasters (such as hurricanes), or through deliberate acts by countries at war, sunken ships, vandals, or illegal dumpers. Read More

Trash Pollution

Ocean Pollution... and Ocean Polluters

By Bekah Barlow

Did you know that it's legal to dump trash in the ocean? Yes, there are limitations for what you can and cannot dump. But it is perfectly acceptable to dump your raw sewage, paper, rags, glass, metal, bottles, or similar refuse, as long as you are at least 12 miles away from the nearest shoreline. It is not permissible to dump plastics anywhere. Read More

Surfing in / Pollution

Caribbean states want end of nuclear waste shipments

The practice of shipping hazardous and nuclear waste through the Caribbean sea is seen as a dangerous environmental gamble, risking the existence of the more than 20 million people, and threatening its coral reefs and ecosystems.

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Forests soak up third of fossil fuel emissions: study

An international team of climate scientists released a study showing the role global forests have played as regulators of the atmosphere. This is the first complete and global evidence of the overwhelming role of forests in removing anthropogenic carbon dioxide.

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Banning plastic grocery bags just got easier in California

News, Pollution

“This is a great day for the Pacific Ocean,” as the California Supreme Court made it easier today for cities to prohibit stores from distributing plastic grocery bags.

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China Orders US Oil Giant To Halt Rigs After Spill

News, Pollution

China said Wednesday it had ordered US oil giant ConocoPhillips to immediately stop operations at several rigs in an area off the nation’s eastern coast polluted by a huge slick.

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China’s Northeast Coast: A Second Oil Spill

News, Pollution

China National Offshore Oil Corporation, recently accused of covering up a huge spill, is cleaning up another slick after a breakdown at a rig off China’s northeast coast.

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Death by Plastic: Is Ocean Plastic Garbage Killing Whales?

News, Pollution

From the coasts of California to Adriatic, Tasmania or Normandy, millions of tonnes of plastic debris dumped each year in the world’s oceans, could pose a lethal threat to whales, according to a scientific assessment to be presented at the International Whaling Commission this week. Ingestion of plastic refuse is emerging as a serious cause of disability and death for the large ocean-dwelling mammals.

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Viruses Bathe at the Beach Too, European Study Finds

News, Pollution

European researchers have found viruses in nearly 40% of more than 1,400 bathing water samples gathered from coastal and inland areas in nine countries.

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Australia Carbon Pollution Tax Announcement: A Start!

Australia Prime Minister Julia Gillard, is on Sunday due to unveil the full detail of her carbon tax legislation, which will see the country’s top 500 polluters charged per tonne of carbon dioxide they emit into the atmosphere.

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Oil and gas spills in North Sea every week

News, Pollution

According to an investigative report and documents obtained in Britain, serious and largely unpublicised spills of oil and gas from North Sea platforms, are occurring at the rate of one a week.

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Recent / Pollution

Revealed: Our Contaminated Beaches, Scotland

September 21st, 2010

As Fraserburgh, Scotland, is getting ready for its UK Surf contest- expected to be “epic” due to Igor aftermath’s swell on European coasts- reports found sewage pollution has not spared many popular scottish beaches.

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7 Ways to Kick the Plastic Habits

September 17th, 2010

One real culprit of our oil addiction is plastic, and most of it ends up on our coasts, beaches and oceans.

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Ending the Oceans’ ‘Tragedy of the Commons’

September 14th, 2010

Leading international marine scientists are proposing radical changes in the governance of the world’s oceans to rescue them from overfishing, pollution and other human impacts.

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Expanding Hypoxic Areas in Coastal Waters

September 14th, 2010

Unnatural levels of hypoxia, which occur mostly in the summer, are primarily the result of human activities that deliver nutrients such as nitrogen and phosphorous into waterways.

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Annual International Coastal Cleanup Day, 2010

September 12th, 2010

Sign up for the 25th Annual International Coastal Cleanup Day: September 25th, 2010. Be part of the solution to marine and coastal pollution!

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Tar balls coat Indian beaches

September 8th, 2010

Semisolid lumps of oil formed layers up to six inches deep (15 centimeters) on the renowned Goa beaches.

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California Lawmakers Reject Plastic Shopping Bag Ban

September 1st, 2010

The measure offered California an opportunity to emerge at the forefront of a global trend, however, lawmakers have rejected a bill seeking to ban plastic shopping bags.

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Algae Blankets China Beaches

August 31st, 2010

The algae bloom, or green tide, covered more than 170 square miles (440 square kilometers) of coasts south of Qingdao.

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Health testing way down at California beaches

August 31st, 2010

Health testing of California’s beaches has slumped to its lowest level since ocean monitoring became law more than a decade ago.

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Historic Move, Canada to list BPA as Toxic

August 27th, 2010

The Canadian government is in process of adding bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical found in thousands of everyday plastics, to its register of toxic substances.

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