Plastic debris on a beach on Lanai, a sparsely populated Hawaiian island.
An estimated 8 million metric tons of plastic waste enters the ocean each year – equivalent to dumping in a garbage truckload of it every minute. A new report calls on the US to help stem the deluge.
Plastic fragments washed onto Schiavonea beach in Calabria, Italy, in a 2019 storm.
Alfonso Di Vincenzo/KONTROLAB /LightRocket via Getty Images
New research suggests that an effective way to locate and track large concentrations of microplastics in the ocean could be from high in the sky.
Plastic waste on a remote beach in Sri Lanka.
Great areas of rubbish – known as ‘garbage patches’ – are known to form in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans, but not the southern Indian Ocean. Why is that?
Everyone knows that plastic waste is an environmental problem. So let’s get creative with it.
The same beach on Henderson Island, in 1992 and 2015.
After making worldwide headlines with the story of the Pacific “garbage island”, researchers were sent a photo of the same beach, white sand free of litter, as recently as 1992.
Many seabird species, including the blue petrel (Halobaena caerulea), consume plastic at sea because algae on the plastic produce an odor that resembles their food sources.
Thousands of seabirds die every year from consuming plastic trash in the oceans. But why do they eat plastic? New research shows that it produces odors that help some species find prey.
Drink containers are the biggest contributors to rubbish in Australia.
Litter image from www.shutterstock.com
Refunds for drink bottles and cans get litter out of the environment – but industry remains opposed.
Microplastics sample collected in a plankton net trawl in the North Pacific subtropical gyre from the SSV Robert C Seamans.
Giora Proskurowski/Sea Education Association
New method tallies microplastics in southern oceans, yielding a total that’s 37 times higher than previous estimates.
Guiyu, China: where electronic goods go to die.
Splitting the Goods and Services Tax in two, and taxing goods at a higher rate, would help to reflect the extra environmental damage done by products that are bought and later thrown in the rubbish.
Had a gutful of plastic rubbish affecting wildlife?
Britta Denise Hardesty
By 2050, 99% of the world’s seabird species will be accidentally eating plastic, unless we take action to clean up the oceans. And some of the highest risk to wildlife is in the Southern Ocean off Australia.
Trawling for plastic at different depths.
We dump more plastic into the ocean each year than we’ve been able to find. New research says much of it is lurking just below the waves.
Plastic waste washed up on a beach in Haiti.
You might have heard the oceans are full of plastic, but how full exactly? Around 8 million metric tonnes go into the oceans each year, according to the first rigorous global estimate published in Science…
Rubbish strewn on beaches eventually ends up in one of the world’s giant ocean garbage patches.
Most of us have littered at one time or another, and in the process we probably contributed to the enormous of amounts of plastic that enter the ocean every year, eventually ending up in one of the five…