drowning the oceans in plastic

by:Yucai     2019-12-27
You may have seen pictures of dolphins captured by abandoned monofilament fishing nets, or photos of large plastic garbage floating in remote waters of the Pacific Ocean, or turtles eating plastic bags, it looks very much like one of their favorite foods: jellyfish.
Or, after a heavy rain, you walk on a beach like a landfill.
About 20 million tons of plastic pollution enters the ocean every year, causing devastating damage to the marine environment.
Plastic waste is also expensive.
According to a recent EPA study, on the West Coast alone, the cost of cleaning up marine waste exceeds $13 per person per year.
Because plastic is not usually degraded in the ocean, today\'s pollution will be a problem for future generations.
There are some success stories in the local area.
Due to state and federal environmental requirements, the Los Angeles area has installed screens in more than 50,000 rainwater basins, as well as plug-ins that exclude all contaminants other than the smallest plastic pollution from local rivers, beaches and bays.
Also, single is prohibited
Plastic bags are used in some places, reducing the use of tens of millions of bags per year.
Singles are banned in West Hollywood, Manhattan Beach, Santa Monica and Malibu
Packed with foam food.
All these measures mean less plastic in the local ocean.
Across the state, legislation banning plastic bags has failed many times due to successful lobbying efforts by plastic bag manufacturers and others, but more than 10 million California people live in cities banning plastic bags.
The State Water Control Board will soon release a statewide garbage policy based on successful garbage control measures in the Los Angeles area.
However, we need a more comprehensive policy and the domestic and international situation remains bleak.
Recognizing last year\'s landmark Rio 20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development as a major environmental issue that the world must address, the conference called for action by 2025 to \"significantly reduce marine litter, to prevent damage to the coastal and marine environment.
\"However, a recent study by the University of California, Los Angeles, analyzed dozens of treaties, programs and policies around the world and found that all of them were seriously lacking.
Overall, well
International agreements of good faith set vague or voluntary standards that require little monitoring and are severely inadequate in funding and difficult to implement.
In fact, researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, have concluded that, under international law, there is basically no way to deal with most of the plastic marine waste on the high seas.
Even the most effective treaty, the International Convention on the prevention of ship pollution, has huge loopholes.
For example, the treaty exempts the accidental loss or disposal of plastic caused by damage to the ship or equipment and often makes enforcement and penalty decisions --
Reluctant State
In order to achieve the significant reduction needed to contain the plastic marine waste crisis, we need a comprehensive solution similar to the Montreal Protocol, an international treaty that significantly reduces the use of global ozone
Consumption of carbon fluoride
Third, an effective treaty will include strict monitoring requirements
Assess the compliance of the parties and provide a funding mechanism and substantive penalties for easily enforced requirements.
A big problem is that negotiations on international environmental treaties can take up to ten years or more.
Therefore, during this period, it is also necessary for the countries concerned to implement regional, national and local policies and programmes to deal with marine plastic waste.
Potential actions may include the creation of an \"ocean-
\"Friendly\" product certification program;
The most common and destructive plastic waste is prohibited in regions and countries;
Expand projects that provide economic incentives for manufacturers to sustainably manage plastic waste;
Establishment and implementation of certification and tracking programs for operations in fisheries and aquaculture;
And establish a source of funds for marine waste remediation through product redemption fees and port container fees.
No single action can solve the marine plastic waste crisis, but the rapid implementation of these policies may have a huge positive impact on reducing serious environmental problems.
Mark Gold is the deputy director of the Institute for Environmental and Sustainable Development at the University of California, Los Angeles.
Kara Horowitz is the executive director of the Center for Climate Change and Environment at the University of California, Los Angeles Law School, Emmet.
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