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

C40 Large Cities Climate Summit

A financing agreement with the World Bank to help the world’s major cities better adapt to climate change, has been reached a the fourth C40 summit, in Sao Paulo.

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EPA Begins Monitoring Summer Monitoring to Protect Area Beaches, Coastal Waters

News, Pollution
Jun
2

With the beginning of the beach season, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is undertaking a beach and harbor protection program to safeguard beaches and bays in New Jersey and New York and protect the health of the people who enjoy them.

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China to step up fight against plastic addiction

News, Pollution
May
30

Around three billion plastic bags were being used daily in China before the 2008 ban. Since then, according to the NDRC, people have used at least 24 billion fewer plastic bags every year, and 100 billion plastic shopping bags may have been kept out of landfills as a result of the law.

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Beaches In Britain Beat 2010’s Bathing Quality Standards

News, Pollution
May
26

More beaches given the top rating this year, but slightly more failed to meet basic water standards

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The Peril of Plastic

News, Pollution
May
26

Many scientists believe marine plastic pollution is one of the major issues, along with climate change, facing the planet.

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Plastic Pollution in Namibia

News, Pollution
May
26

The beaches are beautiful, but a walk along the shoreline and a quick beach cleanup showed that like coastal areas all over the world, Namibia has a problem with plastic trash accumulating on its otherwise relatively pristine beaches.

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Haiti’s Coastline Clean-Up

Pollution
May
19

Every September, from Maine to Bangladesh, hundreds of thousands of people in more than 75 countries remove millions of pounds of trash from waterways and beaches all over the world during Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup (ICC); inspired by its success, the United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti, has launched a range of activities across three regions of the country.

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Environmental and Health Hazards of Chemicals in Plastic Polymers, A Swedish Study

Chris Jordan Photography
News, Pollution
May
16

Many plastic products contain hazardous chemicals that can leach to the surroundings. In studies conducted at the University of Gothenburg, a third of the tested plastic products released toxic substances.

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Iran expert alarmed by critical Caspian Sea pollution

News, Pollution
May
13

Exploitation of oil fields and traffic of large oil tankers dumps 122,350 tonnes of potentially cancerous oil pollutants into the world’s largest inland sea annually.

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Recent / Pollution

Stunningly High Levels of Toxins Found in Whales

June 27th, 2010

The entire ocean life is loaded with a series of contaminants, most of which have been released by human beings.

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France’s continued fight against toxic algae

June 19th, 2010

The green algae are back on the front of the stage. Beyond their potential danger it is, this time, the costs of collection and treatment that are implicated.

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Coastal Devastation We Don’t Hear About

June 17th, 2010

Perhaps no place on earth has been as battered by oil spills as the Niger Delta, which has endured the equivalent of the Exxon Valdez spill every year for 50 years by some estimates.

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Corporations Won’t Self-Regulate

June 9th, 2010

The question haunting everyone is: how was this allowed to happen?

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Plastiki: Restocking in Samoa

June 9th, 2010

The Plastiki expedition’s goal is to spread the word about the rapid growth of non-recyclable plastics across the planet, and how pervasive the problem of plastic waste has become.

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In the belly of the whale

June 3rd, 2010

A snapshot of the trash that’s ending up in our oceans.

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Gravel beaches trapping oil from 1989 Exxon spill

May 29th, 2010

An engineering professor has figured out why oil remains trapped along miles of gravel beaches more than 20 years after the Exxon Valdez tanker disaster in Prince William Sound.

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Take punitive action against BP now

May 27th, 2010

It’s interesting how many people have swallowed the BP public relations’ bait to call the explosion from Deepwater Horizon oil rig the Gulf oil spill. We need to call it what it is: the BP oil spill.

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Microbial Answer to Plastic Pollution?

April 29th, 2010

Fragments of plastic in the ocean are not just unsightly but potentially lethal to marine life. Coastal microbes may offer a smart solution to clean up plastic contamination.

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Plastic Pollution

November 11th, 2009

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 pollution spectacle blatantly unveiling on our beaches is only the prelude of the greater story that unfolded further away in the world’s oceans, yet mostly originating from where we stand: the land.

Read More