The 'up to speed' series of educational e-books covers a wide range of sustainability topics. Up to speed on: Plastics in the Ocean is an easy to read primer on the subject. In just ten minutes, the reader will be up to speed on this important environmental issue.
Plastics are everywhere: around our food, in our clothes, in our cars and homes and increasingly in the ocean and on the beach. Every year millions of tons of plastic waste finds its way into the sea. Here, it breaks down into smaller and smaller pieces many of which get ingested by fish and other marine life. The plastics have various negative impacts including blocking the intestines and accumulating toxic chemicals into the bodies of these animals. Most of the plastics come from the land and the opportunity to exists to improve waste management practices to prevent this. Bioplastics - plastics made from biological materials – may offer a solution if they are biodegradeable and widely used. Ultimately, however, the scale of the problem is so vast that it requires considerable resources which are presently not available. Increasingly, non-governmental and other organisations are rising to this task.