Research: Plastic Pollution in Water

Topics: Ocean, Marine debris, Plastic Pages: 4 (1096 words) Published: September 15, 2014
Solutions to Plastic Pollution in our Oceans
The Basics
We're treating the oceans like a trash bin: around 80 percent of marine litter originates on land, and most of that is plastic. Plastic that pollutes our oceans and waterways has severe impacts on our environment and our economy. Seabirds, whales, sea turtles and other marine life are eating marine plastic pollution and dying from choking, intestinal blockage and starvation. Scientists are investigating the long-term impacts of toxic pollutants absorbed, transported, and consumed by fish and other marine life, including the potential effects on human health. What it means to you

Plastic pollution affects every waterway, sea and ocean in the world. When we damage our water systems, we're putting our own well-being at risk. This pollution also has huge costs for taxpayers and local governments that must clean this trash off of beaches and streets to protect public health, prevent flooding from trash-blocked storm drains, and avoid lost tourism revenue from filthy beaches. NRDC analyzed a survey of 95 California communities and found their total reported annual costs for preventing litter from becoming pollution is $428 million per year. See NRDC's Waste in Our Waterways: Unveiling the Hidden Costs to Californians of Litter Cleanup. Solutions

The most effective way to stop plastic pollution in our oceans is to make sure it never reaches the water in the first place. We all need to do our fair share to stop plastic pollution: individuals need to recycle and never litter, but producers of single use plastic packaging need to do more too. We need producers to design packaging so that it is fully recyclable, and so there is less waste. We also need producers to help cover the costs of keeping their products out of the ocean. http://www.nrdc.org/oceans/plastic-ocean/

The Problem of Marine Plastic Pollution
Most marine debris (80%) comes from trash and debris in urban runoff, i.e. land-based sources. Key...
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