Plastic pollution is flooding our oceans and killing the irreplaceable lives who call the sea home. It is estimated that we dump 8.8 million tons of plastic into the oceans each year, and research predicts there will be more plastic than fish in our oceans by 2050.
When confronted with the option of choosing single-use plastic, some of us tell ourselves it is ok to use it if we recycle it afterward. However, only five percent of single-use plastic gets recycled properly in the world. Another forty percent end up in landfills, and the rest spills into our oceans. This is a pertinent global issue as plastic is not biodegradable, and every bit of plastic that has ever been used still exists on the planet today.
It is an understatement that plastic pollution is harming ocean life. A petition on Care2 recalls the story of a turtle found in Costa Rica with a plastic straw lodged entirely through his nostril. This straw was not only causing extreme discomfort, it was obstructing his breathing and causing undeniable pain and bleeding. Thankfully, rescuers were able to remove the plastic straw and return the sea turtle back to the ocean.
We warn you, the procedure of removing the plastic straw from the gentle sea turtle‘s nostril is rather graphic.
If you want to see the tragic reality of plastic pollution up close, click the graphic below to watch the video of the rescue on YouTube.
The sad reality is this turtle is hardly the only victim of the plastic scourge. Around 700 marine species are currently in danger of extinction due to plastic, by way of entanglement, ingestion or toxic poisoning.
If this story upsets you as much as it has us, please take a minute to sign this petition and share with your network. Please remember the indescribable suffering of this sea turtle and other marine animals the next time you consider using single-use plastic. The end of plastic pollution begins with you. For some reusable straw alternatives, click here. To learn more about how you can eliminate your own use of disposable plastics, check out One Green Planet’s #CrushPlastic campaign.
Image Source: YouTube / Leatherback Trust