Unprecedented Plastic Pollution
When The Mermaids Cry: The Great Plastic Tide
By Claire Le Guern Lytle
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
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
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
Join the world’s largest volunteer effort for our ocean by finding an International Coastal Cleanup event location near you.
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Individuals really can make a huge difference. With an estimated 80% of ocean pollution starting on land the best way to beat marine pollution is by preventing it from ever reaching the sea.
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Premature deaths caused by poor air quality cost the global economy around $225bn in lost labour income during 2013, according to a major new economic study published today by the World Bank and the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME).
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Nutrient pollution emptying into seas from cities, towns and agricultural land is changing the sounds made by marine life — and potentially upsetting navigational cues for fish and other sea creatures, a new study has found.
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Volunteers also saw a surprising shift from past cleanup efforts. Beaches that are typically considered party spots seemed tamer and tidier than usual. Beaches that are lesser known and more secluded, in contrast, were overrun with trash.
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Sargassum beaching events in the Caribbean, West Africa, and other regions have received wide media attention, prompting action by regional governmental agencies and environmental groups seeking to understand this new phenomenon.
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Fish are “stuffing themselves” on plastic, but scientists are still trying to figure out what effect that might have on those of us who eat seafood.
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Native Alaskans, fishermen, conservationists and coalition partners today successfully took their battle against the proposed Pebble Mine to the World Conservation Congress in Hawaii, securing overwhelming approval of a motion urging protection of Bristol Bay from the proposed Pebble Mine and other large-scale mining.
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Experts say human impact on Earth so profound that Holocene must give way to epoch defined by the radioactive elements dispersed across the planet by nuclear bomb tests, although an array of other signals, including plastic pollution, soot from power stations, concrete were now under consideration.
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