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MARINE LITTER SOURCES AND THE IMPACT ON OUR ENVIRONMENT

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Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-Copia-di-TURLES-3The sea around our islands is important to our everyday life, both from a recreational perspective, as well as from an economic one. However, all too often, litter can spoil the beauty of our beaches. Something that is all too easy to observe when you’re close to the sea. 

Many activities take place along the coast, especially in summer. These activities generate waste, that is deliberately or accidentally released in the marine environment. Indeed, the top 10 recorded offending articles found on beaches during clean ups involve cigarette butts, food wrappers, plastic beverage bottles, plastic bottle caps, plastic grocery bags, other plastic bags, straws and stirrers, plastic take out containers, plastic lids, and foam take out containers. 

Plastics are often resistant to degradation and they persist in the marine environment and often float, making them prominent, both to us and to wildlife. Marine debris can enter the ocean environment through multiple sources, ranging from streams to land-based sources, such as waste, run offs, and sewage effluent, through to ocean-based sources, such as maritime and cruise industries, commercial fisheries, recreational fishing and boating activities. However, it’s sometimes quite difficult to identify the exact source of where an object came from, as one type of waste can come from several of them. 

ARTICLE WRITTEN BY TIMES OF MALTA

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