The mermaids' tears: oceans of plastic
Oceans are rapidly becoming the world’s rubbish dump. Every kilometer of ocean now contains an average of 74,000 pieces of plastic. A ‘plastic soup’ of waste, killing hundreds of thousands of animals every year and leaching chemicals slowly up the food chain. In Holland, scientists researching the decline of the fulmar bird found plastic in the stomachs of 95% of all samples; In Germany, chemicals leached from plastic have been found to affect the reproductive systems of animals, while in California, conservationists are seeing increasing numbers of whales and dolphins die agonizing deaths, their guts blocked with rubbish. What will be the long-term impact of this ’plastic pollution’? Can anything be done to clean up our oceans?