Thursday, 29 December 2011
Hundreds of millions of tonnes of plastic litter the world's oceans
Scientists are investigating ways of dealing with the millions of tonnes of floating plastic rubbish that litters our oceans. One of the largest areas of plastic litter is in the North Pacific and covers an area twice the size of France. As well as damaging coasts and killing marine life who mistake the plastic for food, contaminants in the water, which attach to the plastic debris, are distributing waste chemicals across the world's oceans. This dire situation emphasises the need for sustainable goods being used in preference to (arguably) cheaper but ecologically damaging alternatives. The plastic debris now strewn across our oceans is a sad indictment of our collective failure and a burdensome mess for future generations to clean up.