The National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America has released a disturbing study detailing the threat of plastic pollution in the ocean, and its impact on seabirds. Plastic trash is found in 90 percent of seabirds. The rate is growing steadily as global production of plastics increases.
According to the Academy, the “Threat of plastic pollution to seabirds is global, pervasive, and increasing.”
The areas of impact facing the greatest threats are the southern boundary of the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic Oceans.
Plastic found inside birds includes bottle caps, plastic shopping bags, and tiny pieces the size of rice that have been broken down by the sun and waves.
After reading the study’s abstract, Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters commented on the health impact facing the seabirds. “Living along the coast of South Florida, I have seen the small plastic pieces of plastic that wash up into our mangroves and our shoreline,” says Sheeder. “The wildlife rescue groups that we support tell us sharp-edged plastic pieces can kills birds by punching holes in their internal organs. Some seabirds eat so much plastic, there is little room in their stomachs for food. Lack of food affects their body weight and jeopardizes their health.”
Sheeder echoes the concerns of scientists and environmentalists: “At current levels, virtually every seabird will be consuming plastic by 2050. If we don’t address this issue, we are looking at a major contributing factor to the possible extinction of many seabird species. We can’t let that happen.”
Sheeder feels her yachting industry can do more in terms of effective waste management to reduce the threat. “Almost all of the yachts we represent for private yacht charter vacations have the onboard capability to generate fresh drinking water. Now, when our clients request plastic bottled water to be placed onboard prior to their charter, we encourage them to forgo plastic and drink the yacht’s purified water.”
In lieu of plastic water bottles, Sheeder even offers her clients complimentary reusable beverage containers.
Sheeder is confident the tide can be turned. “While the report by the National Academy of Sciences paints a grim future, it also points out that effective waste management can reduce the threat. Protecting our future means preserving the marine environment and promoting responsibility onboard our yachts, in the seas, and along our shores.”
Sheeder further comments, “Everyone can do something. Even just one thing every day. It’s not hard to take that extra moment to help another. Sadly, so many prefer just to stick their heads in the sand rather than being role models and making a difference.”
She encourages others to:
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This entry was posted in News Educational and tagged eco-friendly, Giftivism and Generosity, yacht charter, Gratitude, Charity, Destinations, Conservation Efforts, Jana Sheeder, Make A Difference, 1800yachtcharters, wildlife, protect the environment, protect marine life, random acts of kindness, beach cleanups, Be the ChangePosted on