- Iran to appeal seizure of 9/11 compensation money
- Oil producers meet on output cuts, possible rollover
- One killed, 14 wounded in Ohio nightclub shooting
- Cities and monuments switch off for Earth Hour
- Blasts kill six as Bangladesh commandos storm Islamist hideout
- Top honour for Gulf Hotel
- Barbar clinch handball title
- Federer, Wawrinka advance in Miami
- Innovative fabrics bark up Tokyo fashion tree
- GPIC exceeds targets
Marine Litter and Plastic Pollution
Marine litter is one of the major global problem that is being faced especially by small island developing countries like Bahrain. The litter is generated due to fishing boats, trawlers and industries located near to the shores. Up to 80% of all marine litter in our oceans consist of plastic and from the land based activities which is spilled in water and severely affect the marine life.
The United Nations Environment Program has launched an unprecedented major global campaign on Clean Seas to end and eliminate marine litter which is plaguing the world oceans and pristine water bodies. The subject is of immense importance as more than 8 million tons of plastic enters into the ocean each year, which is equal to dumping a garbage truck of plastic every minute. This dumped plastic impact marine wildlife, fisheries, tourism, navigation, affecting marine vessels and human health. The financial damage is assessed at least $8 billion to marine ecosystems.
Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the entire last century. 50% of the plastic we use is just once and later throw away. Enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times. Unfortunately, we currently recover only 5% of the plastics we produce, which accounts for around 10% of the total waste we generate. The production of plastic uses around 8% of the world’s oil production.
Million tons of plastic can be found in swirling convergences in the oceans making up about 40% of the world’s ocean surfaces, while 80% of pollution enters the ocean from the land. According to estimates, at the rate we are dumping items such as plastic bottles, bags and cups after a single use, by 2050 oceans will carry more plastic than fish and an estimated 99% of seabirds will have ingested this uncontrolled plastic.
The continuous use of plastic and allied products in our daily life and its accompanied pollution adversely affects our oceans. Plastic pollution is reaching our beaches, settling onto the ocean floor and ultimately rising through the food chain into our food we eat. The pollution is causing irreversible damage to the environment and the problem is getting worse with each passing day. We need to act now and create awareness regarding dealing with plastic pollution at all level of its usage.
The major sources of marine litter are micro plastics which are found in daily use products like cosmetics, tooth paste tubes, single-use plastic bags and containers. The CleanSeas Campaign was launched at the Economist World Ocean Summit in Bali, Indonesia which is urging governments to implement plastic reduction policies, targeting industry to minimize plastic packaging, redesign products and calling on consumers to change their throwaway habits before irreversible damage is done to our seas. The campaign aims to achieve major outcomes by the year 2022.
The CleanSeas campaign are planning ambitious measures to be adopted by countries and businesses to eliminate micro plastics from personal care products, ban or tax single-use bags, and dramatically reduce other disposable plastic items. Many countries have already joined the campaign with far-reaching pledges to fight with the growing menace of marine litter and micoplastics.
It is alarming to note that around 51 trillion microplastic particles are found in our oceans which is 500 times more than stars in our galaxy seriously threatening marine wildlife.
With this alarming situation on marine pollution continuing, we cannot blame national and regional organizations and authorities. We as individual needs to plan and act to avoid, minimize and stop using plastics and discarding any waste and litter. To support the movement, we need to make personal commitments to reduce plastic waste by small but meaningful actions like avoiding plastic bags and carrying reusable cloth or paper bags. Minimizing or eliminating the use of plastic water bottles, saying ‘no’ to use of straws and choosing products without microbeads and plastic packaging. Avoid all types of packaging and support alternative environmental friendly material.
In addition, we need the engagement of all relevant stakeholders, including civil society, private sector and all citizens to support national and global efforts in eliminating the plastic pollution and containing marine litter. Only through a real and active engagement by all of us and with the help of dynamic partnerships, we will be able to effectively manage marine litter.
The Ocean is the lifeline of our planet and we are polluting it by unnecessary dumping of plastics and litter. Let us join hands in combating this menace and work for a cleaner environment for our healthy living and also for our future coming generations.
Head, Waste Disposal Unit, Supreme Council for Environment, Bahrain (Email: email@example.com)
In 1993, the United Nations General Assembly designated 22 March as the first World Water Day (WWD). Since then the WWD is globally celebrated with a specific theme to draw wider public attention to the importance of water for mankind and for our future generations. Water is essential to our survival, it is essential...Read More
It is heartening to note that plans have been initiated to turn the Capital Governorate in to a World Health Organization (WHO) Healthy City. This initiative has been taken by the Capital Governorate authority and Ministry of Health to launch the healthy city project. The Healthy Cities project is a...Read More
In March 2017, the subsidies provided on electricity and water to the expatriates will be further enhanced and the consumers will be paying more costs of their energy i.e. electricity and water bills. Electricity and water rates were revised last March when subsidies were lifted, and will continue to increase annually...Read More
This year’s Bahrain International Garden Show (BIGS) is organized in the Kingdom of Bahrain from 22-26th February at the Bahrain International Exhibition Center and is featuring the latest agricultural innovations in utilizing limited resources to create small compact or mini gardens or green spaces in order to...Read More
With the drop in temperatures and persisting cold weather in Bahrain, use of hot water at home, offices, commercial centers, educational buildings and institutions have increased many folds. In winter, heating water for showers, laundry and washing makes up more than a third of an average household’s...Read More
The year 2016 was the hottest year on record. This statement is based on 137 years of diligently kept scientific records that show how humans are transforming Earth’s climate. It is indeed alarming that separate analyses carried out by UK Met Office, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric...Read More