Post Revisted, Revised & Reblogged
30th April 2018
Ducks on the Horizon!
In 1992, the container ship the Ever Laurel had departed from Hong Kong and set sail for the United States. En route and during a storm several of its container load came adrift from the ships’ moorings and were washed overboard. One of the containers’ contents managed to free itself and promptly escaped into the ocean! The ‘escapees’ were none other than a large quantity of plastic floatees – nearly 29000 in fact! Green frogs, red beavers, blue turtles and yellow ducks and then for the next twenty years circumnavigated the globe.
It is a little fascinating story and yet it has huge implications attached to it, for those floatees have aided scientists, researchers and oceanographers alike in understanding the currents of the seas. Within the space of the first year, the floatees began to wash ashore along the coastlines of several countries. It is as l have said already an utterly fascinating story.
However all that aside what is the imperative relevancy here?
The floatees were made of plastic, a non-degradable plastic – a material that will and could potentially take up to 500 years to break down, but that fact is unknown – we don’t know the answers. What we do know however is that plastic sea pollution is Plastifying our very existence. Its presence not only shapes the future but is sadly successfully moulding the increased death rate amongst many wildlife species!
We produce 300 million tonnes of plastic every year and yet we only recycle 5%. Nearly 13 million tonnes of plastic ends up in our oceans killing marine life and destroying valuable ecosystems! 600 billion plastic bottles are produced every year around the world alone, 600 billion! The figure is profound, and direct and remarkably obscene
Simply put, we produce TOO much plastic – if we look at the plastic bottles as an example – most of the time they are single use only then thrown away! There is no reuse or recycle or upcycle and they end up in one of three locations, landfill, and the sea and of course our beaches.
I live in Kent, along the coastline and when taking beach walks with my dog, the one thing l see continually is plastic debris and flotsam on the shorelines and of that 75% is plastic bottles!
There is no denying the benefits that plastic has awarded our lives, industries and economies however due to its single use application it causes untold problems and damages to our world.
The plastic industry needs to radically change the very nature of production and reduce the vast unwelcomed quantities of non-disposable plastics and research state of the art and ground-breaking new alternatives. They have the money, they have the resources and they have the capabilities to easily make this a reality and yet, still they insist on passing the buck along to the softer market – the consumers. We are responsible apparently for their greed and lack of responsibility!
The truth is – we are all responsible – we have one planet – there is no Plan[et] B!
We need to take action now, before plastics do indeed completely mould and shape us into extinction!