Blue, the Boy and the Plastic Soup
– Hello Blue! – the Boy was greeting the Sea with a wide happy smile on his face.
– Good morning my Boy! – the Sea was greeting back the Boy, every time.
For years the Boy was coming to the beach every morning. His heart was beating loud, he couldn’t wait to greet the big Blue sea, to sit and to watch the waves, all gold and shiny, dancing, sunbathed. The Boy talked to Blue. Waived to birds, jumped and swam with colourful small fish, with mighty dolphins. It made him happy, day by day, for years. When the Boy grew up, he was still doing the same, every morning it was time to say hello to Blue.
One morning, Blue has not greeted back. His mouth was full of some gluey, smelly, dense thing and Blue couldn’t talk.
– Hey Blue, what’s wrong? – the Boy was really worried.
Then he looked around. The beach was full of trash. Cigarette butts, plastic bottles and caps, empty plastic boxes, plastic bags, straws everywhere. A bird. A dead bird, with her stomach open and full of used old fishing net and small plastic caps of all colors. And another bird. And a seal. And a sea-turtle, suffocated by a plastic bag. All dead. It wasn’t just on his beach, it was everywhere.
8 million tons of plastic waste from land enters our oceans and waterways every year.
That is like 16 shopping bags full of plastic for every metre of coastline. Sixteen!
That plastic waste usually takes around 30 to over 400, sometimes even 1000 years to disintegrate.
Almost every piece of plastic that we ever used, only for 12 minutes or less, is still somewhere out there.
In last 10 years we have produced more plastic then in the last century, and we recycle only 5%. Tiny five.
Almost every piece of plastic ever produced is still somewhere out there, in our oceans.
There are areas of floating plastic waste in the oceans as big as France. France!
The plastic pollution makes for a staggering 80-90% of all sea water pollution. This floating plastic debris is gradually fragmenting into smaller particles which eventually become microplastics and even nano-plastics.
Over 70% of tap water we drink in Europe contains microplastics. It has also been found in beer, honey, sugar, salt, even in raindrops.
The plastic pollution has a negative influence on sea-life. Thousands of species, from small finches to great white sharks, are directly affected by it whether if it is by swallowing, entangling, suffocating or some other way. Plastic waste releases toxins and hard metals into the environment and plastic particles can adsorb other pollution and various pathogens they may encounter. They act as a sponge for harmful chemicals and diseases.
– Who did it to you, Blue, hey, Blue!?!? – the Boy was out of his mind. Plastic death was everywhere.
It is not coming from somebody else, it is not coming from Space.
It is all about us, people, you and me and our consumption habits.
Most of the global sea water pollution, about 80%, originates from the land, mostly because of poor waste management, landfills drainage or as a by-product of mass tourism. The other 20% comes from nautical tourism, cargo and transport ships and oil platforms.
In the Mediterranean the density of plastic is 1 piece of plastic on every 4m2, which equals to the large ocean pollution gyres.
Imagine walking through your room and after every second step you find a plastic bottle, a box or a plastic mix of all kinds just laying around, entering your fridge, your bath, your plate etc.
Imagine tiny micro and nano-size particles of plastics entering the air you breath, water you drink, food you eat.
The situation in the Adriatic is not any different. Recent research carried out in Croatian Nature Park Telaščica analyzing the sediment found microplastics in 88% of the samples.
Just watch our video recorded on the beach of the beautiful island Cres!
Instead of collecting shells on the beach, our kids will play with plastic particles.
– Blue, I want to help you! – the Boy was crying. – Wait, I’m coming in!
He wanted to swim so he can give a hug to Blue and help him. But the Sea water was tingling, it was spiky, his skin got itchy and red. The sea was full of tiny white and silver drops and turned into a plastic soup.
The Boy couldn’t do anything to help his friend Blue. Not alone.
We have to do it together, you, me, all of us!
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