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Oceans of plastic

8 million tons of plastic, worldwide, ends up in the ocean each year and it is estimated that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish, in terms of weight, in the world’s oceans. It is estimated that at least one million sea birds and one-hundred thousand marine mammals die each year. That number will only increase, over time.

Plastic debris can, and does, absorb toxic chemicals within its structure, including absorbing PCBs and DDTs (chemicals that were banned more than 30 years ago). Plastic is easily mistaken as food, therefore ingested by the sea life, fish and shellfish, and ultimately, these toxins end up on our dinner tables.

A study was performed and the biggest polluters are mostly the developing Asian countries – with 5 countries responsible for more than 50% of the plastic waste in our oceans; namely China, Indonesia, Philippines, Vietnam and Sri Lanka. The only industrialized western country on the list of top 20 plastic polluters is the United States at #20.

With growing levels of plastic pollution entering the oceans, toxins continue to be a part of the food chain – a problem that will worsen without urgent remedial action.

When the sea is dead the planet dies.

 

 

 

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