Thursday, May 17, 2012
Victoria's Green Matters - 18th May 2012
Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent MercuryA consequence of last year’s Japanese tsunami is the vast amount - about 4.8million tonnes - of debris that is travelling around in the world’s seas. Some pieces have already been washed up on the shores of Alaska and Canada. Thousands of tonnes are expected to land on North American shores later this year. The largest piece of flotsam was a fishing boat, floating off the coast of British Colombia, which has now been sunk by the US Coastguard. The islands of Hawaii are thought to be in line for large amounts of debris.
Most of this debris is expected to join the North Pacific Garbage Patch which is a huge area of floating rubbish which continues to increase in size. It is made up of tiny bits of plastic which has formed a thin film on the surface of the ocean. It is a marine desert where few organisms can survive. Despite Hawaii having little local pollution, its beaches are littered with plastic rubbish from around the world.
We live in a world that seems to depend on plastic. In every part of life we use plastic; from the kitchen to the car and into the largest machines. We will not go backwards and live without plastic until all the raw materials have been used up. Perhaps plant based plastic will take over then.
Until this happens we must ensure that all our waste plastic is disposed of properly and does not end up joining the rest in the Pacific Ocean.
Victoria Nicholls. Deal With It.