Germany's single-use plastic bag ban at malls, stores and supermarkets, was announced late last month by the government in an attempt to reduce plastic pollution and meet its EU goal. It’s equivalent to five grocery bags filled with plastic for every foot of coastline in the world. The GGP is definitely not the only type of area where marine debris concentrates. By 1994, some had been tracked to Alaska, while others reached Iceland in 2000. "The plastic recycling rate is an anemic 8% nationwide," Judith said. In 2025, the annual input is estimated to be about twice greater, or 10 bags full of plastic per foot of coastline. The vessel’s name is a nod to famed explorer Thor Heyerdahl, who led a 1947 voyage on the Kon-Tiki to test theories of Polynesian settlement by South Americans. Whether plastics present a unanimously accepted and proven toxic challenge to marine life, and subsequently to humans, is one of the biggest challenges facing scientists right now. Oxo-biodegradable plastic will be engineered to degrade in a short time leaving no harmful residues. The plan responds to the plastic industry’s aggressive expansion of facilities using the country’s oversupply of fracked gas to make throwaway plastic that fills our oceans, landfills and landscapes, contaminating food sources and disrupting essential natural processes. “It’s controllable,” DougWoodring said. (We will explain these processes as we study the nature and properties of plastic itself infra.). Plastic Accumulation in the North Atlantic Gyre, Historic Move, Canada to list BPA as Toxic, Plastic Pollution Coalition, Buried in Plastic Video, Huge Plastic Garbage Patch Found in Atlantic Ocean, Dolphins “Saddened”, I: The Great Plastic Tide: Magnitude, Scope, Extent, Cleaning Up Of The Oceans Debris In The Open Seas, Legislation And International Concerted Programs, Sustainable And Future Technologies – Opportunities and Innovations, Ongoing discoveries and solutions to the traditional plastic waste problem, Green chemistry and “begnign by design” concept, Charles Moore, Algalita Marine Research Foundation, Plastics In Oceans Decompose, Release Hazardous Chemicals. Even though these researches have been conducted on nurdles, it is crucial to keep in mind, as Dr. Takada team confirmed, that other types of plastic debris (from fishing gear, shopping bags, to small fragments) displays the exact same propensity as the nurdles of raw plastic resin to absorb toxins. According to the Biodegradable Plastics Society (2005), when such plastics are composted they break down to carbon dioxide and water. It was shown that plastic pellets suck up these dangerous persistent organic pollutants (POPs) and toxins with a concentration factor that’s almost 1 million times greater compared to the overall concentration of the chemicals in seawater. They are not absorbed into the natural system, they just float around within it, and ultimately are ingested by marine animals and zooplankton (Plankton that consists of tiny animals, such as rotifers, copepods, and krill, larger animals eggs and larvae’s and of microorganisms once classified as animals, such as dinoflagellates and other protozoans.). Global Plastics Consumption to Reach 297.5 Million Tons by 2015, According to 2012 Report by Global Industry Analysts, Inc. Consequently, plastic production in 2040 under the Reduce and Substitute scenario (220 Mt/year [200, 240]) was similar to production in 2016 (210 Mt/year [200, 230]). Witnesses have watched in horror seabirds choosing plastic pieces, red, pink, brown and blue, because of their similarity to their own food. “The Plastiki voyage will be a great adventure, but I think more exciting is the ability to create a conversation on the issue of plastics.”. The BIR (Bureau of International Recycling), whose headquarters is in Belgium, is a trade federation representing the world’s recycling industry. “Plastic is not just an aesthetic problem,” says marine biologist David Barnes of the British Antarctic Survey. This cycle continues until the debris is removed or becomes weighted down with enough broken coral to sink (NOAA 2005a). Plastic pollution is a global problem that is growing exponentially due to both an increase in consumerism and an increase in the number of plastics used to manufacture the things we use on a daily basis. From the whale, sea lions, and birds to the microscopic organisms called zooplankton, plastic has been, and is, greatly affecting marine life, i.e animals on shore and off shore, whether by ingestion or entanglement. Many of these products, such as plastic bags and food wrappers, have a lifespan of mere minutes to hours, yet they may persist in the environment for hundreds of years. The Clean Up the World program is run in conjunction with UNEP. Together with the 2,200-member All Japan Plastic Products Industrial Foundation, the two groups represent the largest plastic producing companies in Japan. There is a huge amount of opportunity for innovation.”. “…And instead, we get the Exxon Valdez of plastic-bag spills.”. For instance, in 2004, the Australian government launched a campaign called Keep the Sea Plastic Free, in which it attempted to educate the public to dispose of plastic waste properly. It is estimated that of the 1.5 million Laysan Albatrosses which inhabit Midway, all of them have plastic in their digestive system; for one third of the chicks, the plastic blockage is deadly, coining Midway Atoll as “albatross graveyards” by five media artists, led by photographer Chris Jordan, who recently filmed and photographed the catastrophic effects of the plastic pollution there. Recycling is definitely a potentially great path to solving the plastic waste problem but definitely not the most unchallenging one. Cigarette filters and cigar tips, fishing line, rope and gear, baby diapers and nappies, six-pack rings, beverage bottles and cans, disposable syringes, tires, the litany of plastic litter is as varied as the products available in the global marketplace, but it all shares a common origin. Polymers are divided into two distinct groups: thermoplastics (moldable) and thermosets (not). Tests have also confirmed liver and cell damage and disruptions to reproductive systems, prompting some species, such as oysters, to produce fewer eggs. This movement sometimes brings the Western Garbage Patch within 500 nautical miles of the California coast and causes extraordinary massive debris pile-ups on beaches, such as in the Hawaiian Islands and Japan. While SM is already a known carcinogen, SD and ST are suspected to be as well. Plastic pollution is currently one of the biggest environmental concerns. These approaches, whilst well-intentioned, will be quickly absorbed by the growth of global plastics production. The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust took various skin and blubber samples and removed the stomach for further study by the Scottish Agricultural College. The Great Garbage patch is two separate accumulations connected by a 6,000-mile marine litter “corridor” known as the North Pacific Convergence Zone (STCZ). The first country to ban plastic bags was Bangladesh, which did so in 2002. Ocean currents carry debris from the East coast of Asia to the center, in less than a year, and from the Western US in about 5 years. The same fossil fuel … In the summer of 2010, Project Kaisei will launch its second expedition to the North Pacific Gyre where it will send multiple vessels to continue marine debris research and, in particular, to test an array of larger marine debris collection systems. Production and development of thousands of new plastic products accelerated after World War II, so transforming the modern age that life without plastics would be unrecognizable today. In essence, humans are eating their own waste.” (Dixit Renee Brown, WiredPress). Les pays à revenu élevé ont un… Mermaid’s tears are often found in filter feeders like mussels, barnacle, lugworm and amphipods. As H. Takada mentioned: “We can’t avoid using plastic, but we use too much. Inside was murky seawater with hundreds of fragmented plastics pieces: “That is what we have to stop”. There have been several successful bacteria based solutions developed at the Dept. Plastic materials are everywhere. After the cheap production cost and long lasting properties of plastic, one of the biggest causes of plastic pollution is the never-ending human greed and our lack of concern for the environment. It appeared as an environmentalist’s dream: a non-chemical, i.e. Of particular concern are the floating small plastic fragments often referred in the media to as mermaids’ tears, which are tiny nurdles of raw plastic resin that form the building material of every manufactured plastic product, or are granules of domestic waste that have fragmented over the years. It has been reported that the lack of adequate solid waste management facilities results in hazardous wastes entering the waters of the Western Indian Ocean, South Asian Seas, and southern Black Sea, among others. Efforts on the part of governments, civil society Plastic bags, polystyrene blocks, and discarded footwear accounted for 80 percent of the items found. Durable and slow to degrade, plastic materials that are used in the production of so many products, from containers for beverage bottles, packing straps and tarps, and synthetic nylon materials used in fishing line, all become debris with staying power. “We were out in the middle of the Pacific, where you would think the ocean would be pristine,” recalls the Alguita’s captain, Charles Moore. Recycle all your plastics. In 2005, French legislators imposed a ban on all non-biodegradable plastic bags, which will go into effect in 2010. The first was Daniel Burd (2008). Plastic pollution takes a huge toll on wildlife: More than 700 species, including sea turtles, fish and whales, eat plastic or get tangled up in it. Under the Reduce and Substitute scenario, annual combined terrestrial and aquatic plastic pollution in 2040 decreased 59% [47, 72] relative to BAU, whereas annual plastic production decreased by 47% [44, 49]. That’s according to figures for 2012, so now it may well be higher. An unprecedented plastic tide has occurred, pervasively affecting the world’s oceans, beaches, coasts, seafloor, animals and ultimately, us. Researchers estimate that over 40% of the world’s garbage is burned.Burning plastic and other wastes releases dangerous substances such as heavy metals, persistent organic pollutants (POP), and other toxic chemicals into the air and persist in ash waste residues. He came upon an area, the Doldrums, a windless part of the ocean that mariners usually avoid. As evoked above, Charles Moore, a Californian sailor, surfer, volunteer environmentalist, and researcher, was crossing the Pacific Ocean while returning from a trans Pacific sailing race in 1997. According to Charles Moore, these resin pellets account for around 8 percent of annual oil production and are the raw material for the 260 million tons of plastic consumed yearly worldwide. and power the manufacturing of it. Not included PET-, PA- and polyacryl-fibers. SAS has already signed up Contico, one of the southwest’s largest plastic factories, to pilot some of the improvements within OCS. A Potential Replacement For Hormone-Scrambling Plastics ? Plastic pollution, accumulation in the environment of synthetic plastic products to the point where they create problems for wildlife and their habitats as well as for human populations. The government has also since announced an additional ban on all plastic bags from the beginning of 2022. (See: Worldwatch Institute – January 2015). Burning of plastic in the open air leads to environmental pollution due to the release of poisonous chemicals. This workshop came out of a 1982 request from the Marine Mammal Commission to the National Marine Fisheries Service to examine the impacts of marine debris. In 1992, twenty containers full of rubber ducks were lost overboard from a ship traveling from China to Seattle. Among the actions the coalition advocates for are a moratorium on new plastic production facilities, using federal purchasing power to curb single-use plastics, tightening regulation of the petrochemical industry, ending fossil fuel subsidies and protecting environmental justice communities from pollution. Once degraded, the plastic was shown to release three new compounds not found in nature: styrene monomer (SM), styrene dimer (SD) and styrene trimer (ST). A 2009 scientific review, funded by the “Breast Cancer Fund”, has recommended “a federal ban on the manufacture, distribution and sale of consumer products containing bisphenol A”. The type of plastic studied by Saido’s team was polystyrene, a white foamed plastic, commonly known by the trademark Styrofoam. Plastics have been consumed by land-based animals, including elephants, hyenas, zebras, tigers, camels, cattle, and other large mammals, in some cases causing death. A plastic-poison has undeniably been instilled by us, prompting an unwilling and illegitimate confrontation of two titans: one synthetic (plastic), the other oceanic. Annual plastic production has skyrocketed since the early 1950s, reaching 322 million tonnes in 2015. Other major emissions from plastic production processes include sulfur oxides, nitrous oxides, methanol, ethylene oxide, and volatile organic compounds. Marine plastic pollution is one of the most serious emerging threats to the health of oceans and a major hazard to marine biodiversity. Undeniably a culture of behavioural changes, now in its infancy, need to further blossom and be implemented/prompted at all levels: individual, associative, governmental, legislative, industrial, technological, educational, philosophical, national, and international. Plastics revolutionized medicine with life-saving devices, made space travel possible, lightened cars and jets—saving fuel and pollution—and saved lives with helmets, incubators, and equipment for clean drinking water. A 2009 scientific review about environmental chemicals and thyroid function concluded, “Available evidence suggests that governing agencies need to regulate the use of thyroid-disrupting chemicals, particularly as such uses relate exposures of pregnant women, neonates and small children to the agents”. The Plastiki, a one-of-a-kind 60-foot catamaran, was created out of 10,000 reclaimed plastic soda bottles, self-reinforced PET (polyethylene terephthalate) and recycled materials. All plant-based, animal-based, or natural mineral-based substances will over time biodegrade. But many of these additives can extend the life of products if they become litter, with some estimates ranging to at least 400 years to break down. The solution is to prevent plastic waste from entering rivers and seas in the first place, many scientists and conservationists—including the National Geographic Society—say. He reported his find to Curtis Ebbesmeyer, an oceanographer, who named it the Eastern Garbage Patch. Those are the attractive qualities that lead us, around the world, to such a voracious appetite and over-consumption of plastic goods. Biodegradation, the breaking down of organic substances by natural means, happens all the time in nature. Thus, Project Kaisei hopes to assign value to that plastic collected, particularly the overwhelming majority that is never recycled. However, materials can bypass treatment systems and enter waterways when rain levels exceed sewage treatment facilities’ handling capacity. Annual plastic production has skyrocketed since the early 1950s, reaching 322 million tonnes in 2015. On initial removal it was found that the entrance to the stomach was completely blocked with a cylinder of tightly packed shredded black plastic bin liner bags and fishing twine. Every time he stepped out on deck, “there were shampoo caps and soap bottles and plastic bags and fishing floats as far as I could see. All rights reserved. The rest floats in open seas, often ending up in gyres, circular motion of currents, forming conglomerations of swirling plastic trash called garbage patches, or ultimately ending up washed ashore on someone’s beach. What causes air pollution from plastic? They are light enough to float in the wind, landing in the earth’s oceans. Commercially available plastics (polyolefins like polyethylene, polypropylene, etc.) It is estimated that by 2050 there will be more plastic in the oceans than fish, that is a terrifying thought! They were also more likely to report reduced sexual function within one year of beginning employment at the factory, and the higher the exposure, the more likely they were to have sexual difficulties. Who is to blame for the plastic pollution problem? That is titanic. National Geographic is committed to reducing plastics pollution. The 2008, 23rd ICC reported that 104 countries and locations, from Bahrain to Bangladesh, and in 42 US States, from southern California to the rocky coast of Maine, had participated. Under normal, dry weather conditions, most wastes are screened out of sewage in countries that do apply strict sewage treatment. For more than 50 years, global production and consumption of plastics have continued to rise. Since its commercial development in the 1950s, plastic has been a real success. Any trash sent to landfills is minimal. According to scientists at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM), a new type of environmentally friendly plastic that degrades in seawater may be developed. The despondent effects and too numerous casualties of the great plastic tide are visible, but more alarmingly, beyond visual, which ought to prompt the perpetrators to choose no other path than the advocacy and culture of consistent and sustained behavioral changes. In 1972, the London Convention, a United Nations agreement to control ocean dumping, was entered into. Since each behaves in the same vortex style, scientists are certain that massive conglomerates of marine litter like the North Pacific Garbage Patch exist in each of the world’s oceans. This is simply not true. Slow, silent, omnipresent, ever increasing, more toxic than previously thought, the plastic pollution’s reality bears sobering consequences, as recently unveiled by the report of Japanese chemist Katsuhiko Saido at the 238th National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in August 2009 and the findings from the Project Kaisei and Scripps (Seaplex) scientific cruise-expeditions collecting seawater samples from the Great Garbage Patch. This process continues until the material has biodegraded to nothing more than CO2, water, humus, and trace elements. Low levels of BPA and PS oligomer have been proven to cause hormone disruption in animals. 04. Surfrider foundation is aiming to raise awareness of plastic marine debris and reduce the proliferation of single-use plastic bags and water bottles, as well as the number one littered item worldwide, cigarette butts. Less visible but very serious is the pollution generated by producing plastic resin. Some plastic pellets had fragmented to particles thinner than the diameter of a human hair. Lying halfway between Asia and North America, north of the Hawaiian archipelago, and surrounded by water for thousands of miles on all sides, the Midway Atoll is about as remote as a place can get. The process involved modeling plastic decomposition at room temperature, removing heat from the plastic and then using a liquid to extract the BPA and PS Oligomer that are not found naturally, thus must have been created through the decomposition of the plastic. The Rise Above Plastics program also seeks to promote a more sustainable lifestyle and educate people about the prevalence of plastic marine debris on our beaches and oceans and how deadly it can be to marine life. From the whale, sea lions, and birds to the microscopic organisms called zooplankton, plastic has been, and is, greatly affecting marine life on shore and off shore. Big plastic makers, including ExxonMobil, Dow and Chevron Phillips Chemical, have said they are committed to tackling plastic pollution, despite increasing production. NOAA has also been contacted regarding cleanup of the debris directly in the garbage patch and other areas of the North Pacific; however, cleanup is likely to be more difficult than it may seem. All you know is that it’s stronger in the middle than it is in the outer reaches. In February 2004, a Cuviers Beaked whale (Ziphius cavirostris) was found washed ashore on the west coast of the Isle of Mull, Scotland. The organisms have plenty of time to adapt to different water and climatic conditions. Contracted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Toxic Substances, the CMC produced the report Plastics in the Ocean: More Than a Litter Problem, which was the first study to identify plastics as a significant marine debris hazard. Much of ocean’s life is in the microscopic size range and zooplankton is the base of the food chain. We campaign both alone and in partnerships against single-use plastics such as supermarket carrier bags, microbeads in rinse-off products and other forms of damaging plastic … Within the framework of Land Based Sources Protocol for pollution reduction from land-based sources, Mediterranean countries and parties to the Barcelona Convention have agreed this year on an initial set of actions covering the reduction of municipal pollution and the elimination of a number of Persistent Organic Pollutants. Plastic production and consumption contribute to greenhouse gas emissions, devalues marine ecosystems, and chokes the wildlife that makes our oceans so diverse. Plastics pollution from marine sources refers to the pollution caused by fishing fleets that leave behind fishing nets, lines, ropes, and sometimes abandoned vessels. “Plastics are a contaminant that goes beyond the visual”, says Bill Henry of the Long Marine Laboratory, UCSC. Plastics—the Facts is an analysis of the data related to the production, demand and waste management of plastic materials. In a 2006 report, Plastic Debris in the World’s Oceans, Greenpeace stated that at least 267 different animal species are known to have suffered from entanglement and ingestion of plastic debris. In addition, most of these plastic waste items are highly buoyant, allowing them to travel in currents for thousands of miles, endangering marine ecosystems and wildlife along the way. Plastic is generally a durable material. People enjoy using plastic because it is flexible, relatively inexpensive, durable, and light - and it is used almost in everything including grocery bags and 3D printed rocket nozzles. Plastic pollution. A growing interest amongst chemists, and ultimately industries, is Green chemistry- policy, also called “benign by design”. This is why the production of plastic items has increased a lot from the past few decades. Plastic Pollution Causes, Facts & Figures . These derelicts nets, called ghost nets, snare and drown thousands of larger sea creatures per year, such as seals, sea lions, dolphins, sea turtles, sharks, dugons, crocodiles, seabirds, crabs, and other creatures. Modern life would be impossible without plastic – but we have long since lost control over our invention. An estimated 299 million tons of plastics were produced in 2013, representing a 4 percent increase over 2012, and confirming and upward trend over the past years. The “Silent World” is shedding mermaid tears. A 2009 review summarized BPA adverse effects on thyroid hormone action. Plastic Pollution Coalition is a growing global alliance of more than 1,200 organizations, businesses, and thought leaders in 75 countries working toward a world free of plastic pollution and its toxic impact on humans, animals, waterways, the ocean, and the environment. Once in the ocean, it is difficult—if not impossible—to retrieve plastic waste. An investigation found that its stomach contained 800 kg of plastic bags (GECC, Groupe d’Etude des Cétacés du Cotentin, 2002). The starting point of all greater good does remain education and information. Plastic production is expected to double in 20 years, which will far outstrip our current waste management and recycling capabilities (Ellen MacArthur Foundation, 2016). Yet some others large garbage patches are highly expected to be discovered elsewhere, as we’ll see further. The plastics are not quite ready for commercialization. They reported that small plastic pellets called “mermaids tears”, which are the result of industry and domestic plastic waste, have indeed spread across the world’s seas. Held the third Saturday of each September, the International Coastal Cleanup engages the public to remove trash and debris from the coasts, beaches, waterways, underwater, and on lands to identify the sources of debris. All sea creatures, from the largest to the microscopic organisms, are, at one point or another, swallowing the seawater soup instilled with toxic chemicals from plastic decomposition. By 2015 deep Ecology yet some others large garbage patches ”, says Bill Henry of river... Always will be plastic, but they also have obligations total discharge of marine debris ( Shomura Yoshida... Method for degrading plastic current approaches to tackling the problem of global plastics production 1950 – 2015 plastics... Fragmented pieces of plastic pollution is one of the hazard of the long marine Laboratory UCSC. 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To facilitate the recycling of very hazardous plastic materials eating plastic once in the wind landing!, humans are eating their own waste. ” ( Dixit Renee Brown, WiredPress ). ” around... Industry Analysts, Inc about 8.6 % with recurrent miscarriage ” et les conséquences dramatiques pour lenvironnement la! A potentially great path to successful resolution of the University of Wisconsin isolated a fungus capable biodegrading...

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