Just in time for this weekend's "Be Kind with Your Line" River Cleanup, the Bay Journal published an article regarding... TRASH!
Leslie Middleton talks about 3 recently released reports: Virginia's 2013 Solid Waste Report, a report from Science magazine, and a UN Environment Programme report. Each of these discuss the vast amounts of garbage and debris that we are producing (Virginia landfills received roughly 15million tons of garbage from Virginia and just over 5 million tons from other municipalities), and where the rest of the debris is ending up.
Science Magazine is concerned that the plastic debris is disappearing! We produce 300 million tons of plastic every year--.1% of that ends up washing into waterways, or 300,000 tons/yr. A recent study only accounted for around 40,000 tons of plastic in the ocean, at the most. That means 99% of the plastic debris is likely breaking down into small particles, which are, in turn, being eaten by marine animals... that's a lot of plastic in our marine animals, many of which may be harvested for food!
The last article estimates theat the financial damage of plastics to our ecosytems is around $13 billion/year.
Trash (particularly plastic trash) is no joke! Participate in one of our cleanups (2nd Saturday of every month), or organize your own, and encourage others not to litter, or better yet, to minimize plastic trash from the beginning by refusing disposable plastic items when possible.
You can find the original Bay Journal article here- http://www.bayjournal.com/blog/post/three_new_reports_talk_trash
Posted by Trista Imrich, Pearl Homes Coordinator, LRNow