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

Fishing for plastic: A European Plan to Save our Coasts and Seas

Pollution
May
6

An EU plan to pay fishermen to catch plastic will help save waters from waste while providing fleets with alternative income.

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Slow clean up for Argentina’s worst environmental stain

News, Pollution
May
3

The Matanza river, also known as Riachuelo or little river, defines the southern boundary of Buenos Aires and according to a number of studies it is one of the most polluted places in the world. The area has become a dumping ground for industrial, chemical and household waste.

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Shell to submit Arctic offshore drilling plan

News, Pollution
May
2

Shell Oil will apply to drill 10 wells off Alaska’s Arctic shore over the next two years under an exploration plan headed to federal authorities.

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Fukushima Parents Protest Over New Permissible Radiation Levels

Japanese children can now be exposed to 20 times more radiation than was previously permissible. The new regulations and new standard of 20 millisieverts a year, equivalent to the annual maximum dose for German nuclear workers, have prompted outcry.

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Japan’s irradiated waters: How worried should we be?

For the oceans, this is the largest accidental release of radiation we have ever seen.

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The Man That Has Been Picking Plastic From Beaches For 7 Years

beach-plastic-pollution

Francis Picco arrived in Easter Island, Chile, from France for a vacation 15 years ago, and never left. The reason was a local woman who became his wife, and a new found peace he couldn’t trade for anything else. Picco, who has adopted the native name Tutuma, has been recovering plastic garbage from Easter Island’s coastline for over seven years now.

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Summerland Beach’s Oil Seepage Mystery

News, Pollution
Apr
23

Before it became the quaint coastal antiquing capital of the Californian South Coast that it is today, with a reputation for stunningly scenic and often empty beaches, Summerland was the hub of Santa Barbara’s oceanic oil rush at the start of the 20th century, the beach providing ground zero for a series of piers and primitive oil rigs harvesting crude from hundreds of offshore wells.

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Plastic Pollution Present on Easter Island’s Beaches

News, Pollution
Apr
22

Easter Island, was the end point of a team of journalists’ trip with the 5 Gyres latest project, exploring plastic pollution in the South Pacific ocean. Upon arrival to one of the world’s most isolated pieces of habitable land, it was not long before the effects of human impact were seen: plastic pollution is taking place on Easter Islands: on the beaches.

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Record trash haul from New Jersey beaches

News, Pollution
Apr
22

In their Annual Beach Sweep report for 2010, released Tuesday, the environmental organization Clean Ocean Action, paints a grim picture of New Jersey beaches. The report broke down the 475,321 pieces of trash its 8,372 volunteers removed from New Jersey beaches during two statewide clean-up events last year.

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Recent / Pollution

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

Ocean Pollution and Ocean Polluters

Sea Garbarge Disposal

October 22nd, 2009

Did you know that it’s legal to dump trash in the ocean? Yes, there are limitations for what you can and cannot dump.

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Wave of Toxic Green Beaches, France; By Sharlene Pilkey

Saint-Michel-en-Greve, Brittany, France

October 1st, 2009

With beaches and coastlines all over the world already under attack from sea level rise, pollution, mining, driving, seawall construction and human development encroachment, another menace is mounting an assault.

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Oil spills on the worlds beaches and in the worlds oceans

May 24th, 2009

Beaches and river shorelines all over the world are at risk from oil spills.

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Mitch Yost

March 28th, 2009

In this video, Mitch Yost participates in a long forgotten PSA to help cross border water pollution in Imperial Beach, CA.

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