Ocean Plastics Still a Scourge

California Congressmen Mike Honda and Sam Farr, hosted a tech-event in Washington D.C. the other day hoping to get some push behind the growing plastics-in-the-oceans problem.  Everything from throw away plastic medical supplies to six-pack beer rings contribute to wildlife death and ecosystem disruption every year.  More plastics have been generated in the last twenty years than in the entire century that proceeded it. The Honda/Farr event was designed to showcase alternative solutions to those embedded in plastics.

Rob Chase, founder of NewGen Surgical in San Rafael, is designing products made from the waste of sugar-cane harvests for hospital emergency rooms, where disposable plastic medical devices are the norm

Kevin L’Heureux, president of Fishbone Packaging in Santa Clarita (Los Angeles County), showed a photo of a turtle whose girth was squeezed to the size of a soda can by the plastic six-pack ring that had ensnared it when young. He has designed a paper six-pack holder that can break down in a home composter.

An estimated 8.8 million metric tons of plastic are added to the oceans each year — or about five grocery bags full of plastic litter for every foot of coastline in the world — said University of Georgia environmental engineer Jenna Jambeck

Aug. 11, 2009. Scripps Institution of Oceanography .  A patch of sea garbage at sea in the Pacific Ocean. ( Mario Aguilera/ AP)

Aug. 11, 2009. Scripps Institution of Oceanography . A patch of sea garbage at sea in the Pacific Ocean. ( Mario Aguilera/ AP)

 

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