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Sea Floor Litter Rises by 150% in 1 Year

We have published a number of articles this year on the issue of plastic ocean waste and the steps that companies are taking to reduce the problem. However it seems that coastal litter is still on the rise.

The Department for Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) released figures yesterday showing that litter found on the sea floor has risen by 150% in the past year.

The report is published annually and shows the growing problem with our throwaway culture. In 2016 the number of litter items found on a typical sea floor was 358, 150% higher than in 2015.

Plastic waste being emptied into the ocean

A truck load of plastic is emptied into the world’s oceans every minute on average CREDIT: PLASTIC OCEANS FOUNDATION

The study also shows that the majority of waste appearing in oceans is plastic based, around 78% of all rubbish examined.

We recently reported on Sky’s Ocean Rescue campaign, which highlights the worsening landscape and the scale of the issue and calls on people, as well as corporate entities to address their habits around disposal.

It’s been found that around eight million tonnes of plastic waste is discarded into global oceans each year, which has serious implications for marine creatures and wildlife. It’s suggested that the vast majority of this plastic is disposed on-shore but eventually makes its way into the sea. Disposable bottles are the biggest contributor to the problem.

Th British government is currently considering the introduction of a bottle deposit scheme, however it was reported yesterday that bodies lobbying for the food and drink industries have been moving against the potential new policy.