Plastic pollution is an epidemic responsible for the loss of over 1 million marine creatures per year. It is a seemingly insurmountable job to rid the world of plastic, due to microscopic degradation, but we can work towards limiting the amount of plastic we produce and discard routinely. Much of the world's plastic is scattered throughout its ocean, yet a substantial amount can be found on beaches.
You may or may not be familiar with plastic pollution, but by the end of this article, you should be. There are so many reasons to join the fight against plastic pollution, and so little to lose. Merely picking up a plastic water bottle on the beach is beneficial for the cause and could save at least one marine lifeform. The source of plastic pollution found on Earth's beaches vary, which is a reason why cleanup efforts are problematic.
These images are some of the most extreme examples of plastic on beaches. The amount of plastic found on our shores that makes it to the ocean is staggering, and it's something you'll read about below. Hopefully, these pictures inspire you to get involved in cleanup efforts. These are 25 pics of beaches overrun with plastic.
25 Taiwan Environmentalists Clean Penghu Beaches
It's heartening to see groups like the one in the photo above work together to rid our beaches of plastic waste. The more hands we can gain towards solving this issue the better. During the event in the photo, the group was able to clean more than 10,000 plastic bottles from the beaches of Penghu. As detailed by taiwannews.com.tw, "During a special beach-cleaning campaign, environmentalists removed 3 tons of trash." It's an astonishing accomplishment. Steps can be made towards preventing plastic pollution on beaches such as this one by increasing waste bins near seashores, putting up signs, and adding more water fountains.
24 Accra, Ghana Beach Is Overrun With Plastic
Ghana's sanitation issue includes its overly plastic polluted beaches. The government of Ghana may ban the use of certain types of plastic since the problem is becoming increasingly worse. The above photo shows one of Accra, Ghana's beaches that are covered in copious amounts of plastic. Flooding is a frequent occurrence in Ghana, and the result of floods is often beaches being covered in plastic pollution, which is not easily removed. As mentioned by perilofafrica.com, "One use for the plastic is for filling cracks during road construction. The above example shows a severe case of plastic pollution found in Africa.
23 Plastic Pollution In Kenya
Even Kenya is not immune to the effects of plastic pollution. Animals that are native to Kenya such as green turtles, hawksbills, and olive ridleys are struggling due to the presence of plastic on Kenya's beaches. The Worldwide Fund For Nature (WWF) is taking steps towards reducing the usage of plastic. By holding campaigns, the WWF can spread awareness about the issue and encourage cleanup efforts. You can read more about Kenya's plastic pollution problem at wwfkenya.org. Animals cannot digest plastic, which is one reason why people should dispose of their plastic appropriately to prevent further loss of the wildlife population.
22 Dell Is Becoming Greener By Using Beach Plastic For Their Computers
It's a small pile of garbage compared to some of the other photos contained in this listicle. One company taking steps towards a healthier future is the computer company known as Dell. According to notebookcheck.net, "the manufacturer will now be collecting plastics from oceans and beaches to create brand new packaging for the recently released XPS 13 2-in-1. The pilot project has already collected around 8 tonnes of plastic waste for use in packaging." Actor Adrian Grenier is working with Dell to prevent the usage of plastic pollution. If companies like Dell continue to spread the word, they can make a significant impact. Mega-corporations are the source of most plastic items.
21 Marine Animals Suffer From Beach Plastic
A wide variety of marine animals are affected by plastic pollution. As plastic continues to fill our beaches and oceans, marine animals will continue to be at risk. Some animals that are affected by plastic pollution include sea turtles, sea lions, seals, seabirds, fish, whales, and dolphins. Carcasses of animals are discovered with evidence of plastic being the cause of their demise. Animals can easily ingest or get caught in remnants of plastic. We can do our part to clean most plastic, but the sad reality is, according to onegreenplanet.org, a significant amount of plastic pollution is microscopic and isn't visible to the naked eye.
20 Will We Ever Solve Earth's Plastic Pollution Problem?
Probably, we won't solve the plastic pollution problem shortly. We may never solve Earth's plastic pollution due to how much is covered on our beaches. Support organizations by volunteering or donating to aid cleanup efforts, recycle your plastic bottles whenever possible, and try to reduce your use of plastics. The impact that plastic has on the environment is too detrimental to be ignored. According to plasticpollutioncoalition.org, "Americans alone discard more than 30 million tons of plastic a year; only 8 percent of it gets recycled. The rest ends up in landfills or becomes 'litter', and a small portion is incinerated."
19 Get Rid Of Beach Pollution
This ship was constructed out of plastic to clean the beach and spread awareness of the impact that the type of pollution is having on our environment. It's a growing threat that affects the environment. The creation of the ship can be credited to an organization called Surfers Against Sewage. The photo above shows a cleanup effort that is just one of the many acts the organization has put toward cleaning our beaches and protecting the environment. Hopefully, this creation was eventually recycled. Even if it stays on the beach, it would be helpful in reducing plastic pollution.
18 Mental Health Is Affected By Garbage- Malaysian Beach
By cleaning your room, it's possible to boost mental health. Just like cleaning your room, the prevention of plastic waste near beaches is an easy task. There are few worse places to dispose of trash than the shore. Dispose of plastics in wastebaskets or recycle and we can prevent future cleanups.
The picture in the above photo could have been one of a beautiful Malaysian beach but is instead a horrible sight. It's a shame that beaches like this are covered in waste, influencing the atmosphere of the environment. People are missing out on the benefits of clean beaches, which could be taking a toll on humans' mental health.
17 Labuan Bajo, Indonesia Beach Pollution Affects The Pacific Ocean
The trash of Labuan Bajo, Indonesia, which is located in the continent of Asia, significantly impacts the Pacific Ocean. The featured photo above helps explain why the Great Pacific Garbage patch is as large as it is. According to the website of almyrosinfo.gr, "A new ominous exhibition by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation predicts that by 2050 the Earth's oceans will harbor more plastic garbage from fish." We need to clean up plastic waste as soon as possible to prevent a future epidemic.
16 Tarutao National Park Contains Extreme Plastic Pollution
National parks are excellent choices for vacation destinations. They provide an opportunity for people to live in cities and elsewhere to get a glimpse of the natural world. It is sad to see this photo of Tarutao National Park's beach that is covered in plastic waste. Plastic items pollute the park's beaches and the water surrounding it. Moreover, the beach's pollution is affecting its wildlife. Tarutao National Park hosts marine wildlife such as sharks, stingrays, and dolphins. It also hosts other wildlife such as bats, different types of snakes, squirrels, and frogs. As detailed by cbc.ca, "Between 1970 and 2014, there was 60 per cent decline, on average, among 16,700 wildlife populations around the world."
15 Ocean Trash On The Beach
It's asinine to think that someone purposely dropped a bottle like the one shown in the photo above. However, littering is a frequent occurrence. It is careless to litter at any location—not to mention that it's illegal! Littering in the United States could lead to a fine of up to $1,000.
What was once a beautiful sandy beach is less breathtaking since an enormous amount of trash has been carelessly dumped. More waste and recycling bins would have prevented this beach from becoming polluted. Perhaps security cameras would deter people from littering. You'd have to be Elon Musk to solve this conundrum.
14 Plastic Waste Effects On Fish Health
A beach that is filled with trash could be that way for a few reasons. When trash sits on the beach, it does not only affect land animals but also marine animals due to waste being sucked into the ocean when it is high tide. The opposite can also happen with plastic waste that is washed onto the shore. To leave this much trash sitting on one of Earth's beaches is irresponsible regardless if you didn't place it there. You can report the discovery of excess plastic pollution on a beach to the city. Please, take any step towards the prevention of plastic waste.
13 What Was Once A Sandy Beach In Turneffe Atoll, Belize
Plastic washed up on the beach is detrimental to the environment. Without a doubt, the plastic needs to be removed to protect the environment and the animals who live in it. To provide another viewpoint on the issue, it's worth reading an article from the independent.co.uk. The article from independent.co.uk said, "This may indeed harm marine life and their ecosystems, but when you look closely at the evidence, it turns out that we are far less sure than it might appear." Regardless of the extent to which marine life is affected by plastic pollution, we need to solve the crisis quickly and efficiently.
12 Cleanup On The Beach
According to the website of theworldcounts.com, "In the North Pacific Ocean, there is 6x more plastic debris than plankton. They are causing deaths to ur marine animals who mistake them for food." You may want to wear footwear that is more protective than sandals when cleaning up disgusting beaches like the one above to prevent injury. Don't be afraid to clean plastic off a beach. You don't need to volunteer with an organization; you merely need to head to a polluted plastic beach and start cleaning. Guaranteed, you will feel fulfilled after cleaning a beach.
11 Hawaii's Beaches Are In Need Of Cleanup
If we can't keep the beaches of Hawaii clean, then the problem is undoubtedly severe. Hawaii is renowned for its easy-to-lie beaches and tropical surrounding. It's a shame that the archipelago of Hawaii is affected by the phenomenon known as "plastic pollution." Vacation goers and Hawaii residents alike could benefit from the removal of Hawaii's plastic problem. The island is close to garbage patches, which bring plastic from the ocean. Also, the littering of plastic is an issue that Hawaii faces. Kamilo Point is one of the areas that is most affected by Kamilo Point.
10 Make A Donation Towards Plastic Pollution Removal
Possibly the most dangerous type of plastic waste found on beaches is the plastic rings used to hold plastic bottles and aluminum cans. Plastic rings (also called plastic yokes) are small and narrow, which opens the possibility for fish to become trapped inside the rings. Often, marine wildlife is found trapped inside the rings. With the presence of sites such as the Great Pacific garbage patch, it's no wonder why such an enormous amount of trash can wash up on beaches. Most of the garbage found in the Great Pacific garbage patch comes from countries in Asia, and it can later wash ashore almost anywhere in the world.
9 Plastic On The Beach Is Too Difficult To Clean
Simple cans and bottles are straightforward to clean. By using safety gloves, one can lower the chance of receiving a laceration during a cleanup. The problem is, however, that plastic bottles and cans are often damaged before or after they are placed on the beach. It's nearly impossible to clean up all the materials that were littered on a beach such as the one in the above photo. We may never entirely dispose of beach waste, but it's nonsensical to think we can leave polluted plastic beaches in the condition that they are. Hopefully, methods for removing plastic improves in the future.
8 A Great Place To Visit Aside From All The Beach Pollution
A beach in Cork County was covered in plastic waste after the plastic washed up from the ocean. According to the website of thetimes.co.uk, "research found that only four of the 50 areas surveyed by Irish Business Against Litter were deemed to be clean according to European standards and 18 were littered, heavily littered or litter blackspots. The other 28 areas were categorised as moderately littered." A seemingly large pile of trash may sit on the beach for years before it is cleaned. It's easier to clean plastic while it's large than when it shrinks during degradation.
7 Preventing Plastic Pollution Is As Easy As Cleaning Up After Yourself
The most effective step towards preventing the spread of future plastic pollution is as easy as cleaning up after yourself. If everyone disposed of there plastic waste accordingly, we wouldn't have a plastic problem. If tomorrow, everyone began disposing of his or her plastic waste properly, we would be able to remove existing plastic debris until it is gone systematically. Unfortunately, an estimated 18 billion pounds (9,00,000 tons) of trash enters the world's oceans per year. Animals who digest plastic become unable to process other foods and could succumb to poisoning. As detailed by sas.org.uk, "Plastics consistently make up 60 to 90% of all marine debris studied."
6 Plastic Trash Pollution
It's a small pile of garbage compared to some of the other photos contained in this article, but it still is enough plastic to be hazardous to the environment. Hopefully, the trash is piled up in this manner because it will soon be disposed of and someone didn't just leave it there. Plastic poses a threat to animals as well as humans. Newborns can be born with illnesses caused by plastic pollution. It takes years for plastic to shrink in size, but it never completely goes away. Plastic is bad for human health, and it is linked to cancer.
5 Too Much Plastic
Too much plastic on our beaches is terrible for the health of Earth. According to beachapedia.org, "In heavily polluted areas of the marine environment, like the North Pacific Central Gyre, the mass of plastic is up to six times greater than the mass of plankton." Such figures indicate that we are not doing enough to protect the marine habitat. It may be a better idea to switch to using aluminum cans instead of plastic bottles since aluminum cans are much more likely to be recycled. Soon, it is possible that plastic bottles will be replaced with biodegradable containers.
4 Beach Pollution Is Bad For The Air
A beach found in Zouk Mosbeh, Lebanon is now covered in a heaping pile of trash and plastic waste after a winter storm. The winter storm caused waste to wash up on the beach after it came from the ocean. Soon after, trucks began to remove the pileup of trash. The citizens of Zouk Mosbeh were lucky in this case, but it was likely not the first time that plastic was found on this beach. Waste pileup like what is shown in the photo above affect air quality as it can release toxic emissions into the air as well as copious amounts of carbon dioxide.
3 Beaches Are Filled With Pollution
Even Greta Beach, Christmas Island, Australia, a popular tourist destination is not safe from a surplus of plastic pollution. One day a beach such as Even Greta Beach could be clean, then several days later, people may return to find an enormous pileup of plastic waste. Over time, a significant amount of plastic can blow into rivers and the ocean after sitting in a landfill. Images like these give us a reason to visit Christmas Island, Australia. While visiting a beach like Even Greta Beach, you can make an impact on the environment by volunteering, engage in bird-watching, and see the migration of red crabs.
2 Beach Pollution Or Garbage Dump?
It can be difficult to tell the difference between beach pollution and a garbage dump. A significant amount of waste can wash up on our beaches, and with cleanup being such a challenging job, beaches are often left in their condition for months, and maybe years. Indeed, minimizing the amount of littering in our environments can prevent widespread beach pollution. What we see in this photo is an extreme example of beach waste and plastic pollution. Alternatives such as paper and glass are much safer than plastic. Approximately 8 million metric tons of plastic end up in our ocean per year.
1 Make A Difference By Volunteering For Beach Plastic Cleanup
One of the most notable organizations for plastic pollution is Lonely Whale Foundation. Lonely Whale Foundation is educating people about the usage of single-use-plastic straws in the ocean, and why single-use-plastic straws shouldn't be used. Plastic straws break down in the water and turn into microscopic bits that are swallowed by birds and marine wildlife.
The 5 Gyres Institute, Bye Bye Plastic Bags, Bahamas Plastic Movement, and Parley for the Oceans are among the organizations making a difference towards removing plastic pollution. Hopefully, this article encourages you to volunteer to be a part of the change.
Sources: freesurfmagazine.com, finisterre.com, perilofafrica.com, news.nationalgeographic.com, onegreenplanet.org, tripzilla.com, strawlessocean.org, coastalliving.com, huffingtonpost.ca,travelandleisure.com