Plastic and other Environmental Dangerous Waste

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Lisbeth
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Re: Plastic and other Environmental Dangerous Waste

Post by Lisbeth » Wed Nov 21, 2018 11:34 am

Dead whale had 115 plastic cups, 2 flip-flops in its stomach

2018-11-21 08:01 AP

A dead whale that washed ashore in eastern Indonesia had a large lump of plastic waste in its stomach, including drinking cups and flip-flops, a park official said on Tuesday, causing concern among environmentalists and government officials in one of the world's largest plastic polluting countries.

Rescuers from Wakatobi National Park found the rotting carcass of the 9.5m sperm whale late on Monday near the park in Southeast Sulawesi province after receiving a report from environmentalists that villagers had surrounded the dead whale and were beginning to butcher the rotting carcass, park chief Heri Santoso said.

Santoso said researchers from wildlife conservation group WWF and the park's conservation academy found about 5.9kg of plastic waste in the animal's stomach containing 115 plastic cups, four plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags, 2 flip-flops, a nylon sack and more than 1,000 other assorted pieces of plastic.

"Although we have not been able to deduce the cause of death, the facts that we see are truly awful," said Dwi Suprapti, a marine species conservation coordinator at WWF Indonesia.

She said it was not possible to determine if the plastic had caused the whale's death because of the animal's advanced state of decay.

Indonesia, an archipelago of 260 million people, is the world's second-largest plastic polluter after China, according to a study published in the journal Science in January. It produces 3.2 million tons of mismanaged plastic waste a year, of which 1.29 million tons ends up in the ocean, the study said.

Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan, Indonesia's coordinating minister of maritime affairs, said the whale's discovery should raise public awareness about the need to reduce plastic use, and had spurred the government to take tougher measures to protect the ocean.

"I'm so sad to hear this," said Pandjaitan, who recently has campaigned for less use of plastic. "It is possible that many other marine animals are also contaminated with plastic waste and this is very dangerous for our lives."

He said the government is making efforts to reduce the use of plastic, including urging shops not to provide plastic bags for customers and teaching about the problem in schools nationwide to meet a government target of reducing plastic use by 70% by 2025.

"This big ambition can be achieved if people learn to understand that plastic waste is a common enemy," he told The Associated Press.
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela
The desire for equality must never exceed the demands of knowledge

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Re: Plastic and other Environmental Dangerous Waste

Post by Flutterby » Wed Nov 21, 2018 12:32 pm

:evil: :evil:

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Lisbeth
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Re: Plastic and other Environmental Dangerous Waste

Post by Lisbeth » Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:43 am

Beachfront hit by ‘trash tornado’

Environmental consultant warns of dire consequences after revellers leave mountains of rubbish behind

BY GUY ROGERS - 03 January 2019

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Workers start the big cleanup at Shark Rock Pier after the New Year celebrations - Image: Fredlin Adriaan

Beach-lovers woke up to the after-effects of a “trash tornado” on the Port Elizabeth beachfront on Wednesday.

Beaches, lawns, gardens, walkways and carparks were covered in piles of rubbish left behind by people celebrating the first night of 2019.

Shortly after dawn, the brisk offshore wind was blowing papers and plastic into the sea and seagulls were scavenging busily.

The sight had regular members of the Hobie Beach early morning swimming group retreating in disgust and coffee shop managers shaking their heads in anger at the debris banked up outside their doors.

By 7.30am, teams of metro waste-pickers had been deployed and were starting to make inroads into the mounds of food and packaging waste and broken bottles.

But unless the source of the problem was urgently addressed it would wreck the fabric of Port Elizabeth, local environmental consultant Dr Mike Cohen, former director of Eastern Cape Nature Conservation, said.

“The tourists will dwindle. There will be fewer fish uncontaminated by plastic pollution, and a resultant food shortage.”

The problem needed to be tackled with a carrot and stick approach, he said. “The carrot should be having a clean environment that we can enjoy and use to generate sustainable jobs and wealth.

“The stick should be wielded via visible policing, by officials who step in and instruct litterbugs to pick up what they’ve just discarded, and issue fines where necessary.”

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Litter lies strewn along Port Elizabeth’s Marine Drive after being left behind by beachfront revellers - Image: Fredlin Adriaan

Greater efforts needed to be made to create awareness through school and community education programmes, he said. On the other end of the spectrum, awareness about litter should be tackled by boosting the status of the workers employed to clean up the mess.

“It’s a horrible job but a crucial one. At the moment litter picking is regarded as the lowliest form of employment and this needs to change in terms of the respect we give these people and how much they are paid.”

If the public did their bit and a spotless environment was achieved, this would not make municipal cleanup staff redundant, he said.

“There are a myriad important environmental and socioeconomic improvement projects to tackle, for instance, the clearing of alien vegetation.”

Metro spokesperson Mthubanzi Mniki said the municipality had in fact improved its focus on the beachfront festive season litter issue with bigger litter-picker teams and intensified monitoring.

“On the other hand, however, we have increased numbers of people flocking to the beachfront. This year from Kings Beach to Hobie Beach alone for the December 31-January 1 event it is estimated that there were 60,000 people.”

The metro hired an extra 200 Expanded Public Works Programme recruits to bolster its beach cleanup team at the start of the festive season through to the end of January, at a cost of R2.9m. Only 14 of them turned up initially for work but replacements were quickly slotted in and there had been “on average good attendance”, Mniki said.

He said the issue of litter was a joint responsibility of the municipality and its citizens.

It was being addressed primarily through awareness spearheaded by its War on Waste environmental education bus which visited schools, taxi ranks and other points.

“There is also an enforcement element where people can be fined up to R2,000 for littering.” Pressed on this point, Mniki said a number of these fines had been dispensed in cases where rubbish had been illegally dumped out of a bakkie.

No data was immediately available regarding the fining of litterbugs, however.
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world." Nelson Mandela
The desire for equality must never exceed the demands of knowledge

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