New report details the importance of capturing litter upstream before it becomes unmanageable ocean pollution.
The President of ISWA, Antonis Mavropoulos, said: “Marine litter is becoming a global challenge, similar to climate change.”
“Our oceans are already the biggest dumpsite for million tonnes of used plastics per year. The visible plastic pollution, which is now in almost every shoreline in the world, is a relatively small problem in comparison to invisible micro-plastics.”
The report, available on the ISWA Task Force website, estimates that in low income countries, for every metric tonne of uncollected waste near waterways, almost 18 kilograms of plastic enters the ocean — equivalent to more than 1,500 plastic bottles.
For every metric tonne of plastic waste that is collected, as much as seven kilograms of plastic waste are leaked to the ocean between collection and disposal.