In 2016 a special type of bacteria was found on a Japanese dump. While incredibly fast progress is being made, experts warn that their use is still probably years away. The other concern, is that they may leak into the environment. If this were to happen damages could be incredible.
Sea grasses once carpeted much of the worlds oceans at depths that suit them. In many places such as the UK destructive fishing practices have been allowed, such as bottom sea dragging. This has also severely damaged the UK cold water coral reefs, but that is a story for another day.
This latest information, may well give us a reason to replant them (aside from the benefits to biodiversity and the huge amount of carbon they take up).
I have written in the past, about a discovery made on a Japanese dump back in 2016 of a plastic eating enzyme. By working in the lab, scientists have been able to speed this process up 6 times, such that full recycling is thought to be possible of plastics within 2 years.
For those of you who have been reading this blog for a while you will remember I have in the past talked about the ocean cleanup.
In simple terms the ocean cleanup is a group whose aim is to remove the plastic from the world’s oceans. The majority of this plastic is caught in relatively small parts of the ocean compared to it’s full size. Because the ocean currents carry these plastics to these small areas, it is a simpler job that is otherwise might be (though still huge).
Unfortunately, while plastic straws are a problem, there is something that causes more issues. I am talking of fishing equipment. People have counted, and found that 46% of the Pacific garbage patch is made of discarded fishing equipment such as nets.
Fishing is an important source of protein for much of the human race, but if it’s to remain sustainable we need to remove the equipment left behind. Having said that, drinking straws should quickly be able to become a historical part of the problem if biodegradable straws are taken up quickly.