Each one of us has the power to start reducing and ultimately stop plastic waste from reaching the fragile ecosystem under the ocean’s surface. From purchasing items in eco-friendly packaging, recycling plastic and using non-plastic containers for out water, groceries, food storage, etc., we can control these actions that are within our sphere of influence.
In a 2019 article entitled “When the Mermaids Cry: The Great Plastic Tide”, author Claire Le Guern states that “The world population is living, working, vacationing, increasingly conglomerating along the coasts, and standing on the front row of the greatest, most unprecedented, plastic waste tide ever faced. Washed out on our coasts in obvious and clearly visible form, the plastic pollution spectacle blatantly unveiling on our beaches is only the prelude of the greater story that unfolded further away in the world’s oceans, yet mostly originating from where we stand: the land.”
Le Guern goes on to state that, “Environmentalists have long denounced plastic as a long-lasting pollutant that does not fully break down, in other terms, not biodegradable. In 2004, a study lead by Dr Richard Thompson at the University of Plymouth, UK, reported finding great amount of plastic particles on beaches and waters in Europe, the Americas, Australia, Africa and Antarctica. 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.”
Le Guern’s article sheds light on the mind-boggling amount of plastic waste already floating in our seas and oceans. She offers an extensive list of articles outlining the problem as well as some providing hope in the way of solutions. The link below is to her article:
So, what can you do?
Follow some basic steps as outlined below:
1. Stop using plastic bags when shopping
2. Stop buying ‘halves’ of fruit and veg
3. Buy products in glass or reusable plastic containers
4. Ditch the plastic wrap
5. Start using bar soap
6. Start using reusable razors
7. Sleep in natural fibers
8. Watch what you wear
9. Buy in bulk
10. Make your own cleaning products
These are just a few things we can all do to play our part in keeping plastics out of the ocean.