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Marine Pollution (Maritime Pollution)

The Sea as Rubbish Bin
Not only the industry produces sewage which flows in the sea. Each of us uses the sea directly or indirectly as a rubbish bin. Our task is to limit the amount and the kind of rubbish. Most of the substances conducting into the sea cannot be reused or broken down by nature and cause soiling, destruction and in the end death of the seas.

The marine protection organization Oceana estimates that worldwide every hour about 680 tonnes of waste gets thrown directly into the oceans, more than half of it is made out of plastic. The extent of pollution can be judged best between Hawaii and California.
The so called "Great Pacific Waste Patch" circles there which is a huge carpet of rubbish of more than three million tonnes of plastic - on an area as big as Western Europe.

Cigarette filters for example need 200 years to be biologically degraded by nature. They are very poisonous and can get swallowed by fish what they won't survive. Cigarette filters do not belong into the sea.
Sea turtles mix up plastic bags with jellyfish and swallow them. This can cause an intestinal obstruction or the toxins can infect the body.

Batteries are extremely poisonous and can contaminate big areas on land as well as under water. In most tourism countries of the third world, batteries cannot be disposed professionally. Use either rechargeable batteries or take the used ones back home.

Take also all your articles made of plastic back home from your holiday because it takes centuries to degrade them by nature. That includes all the empty plastic packaging of shower gel, shampoo, sun cream, etc. because they also might not get professionally disposed at your holiday destination.

The "out of sight, out of mind" expression doesn't work with the rubbish. Everything we throw away thoughtlessly will come back to us one day. Even if we cannot see the rubbish anymore in the water or wherever - it is still there!



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