Marine litter has long been a concerning environmental issue, with the outbreak of the new crown outbreak, masks and gloves and so on has become a new source of marine pollution. According to media reports, the French “Clean Oceans” recently released a video showing the discovery of new types of marine waste, including masks, disposable gloves and other protective items during a marine clean-up operation in the Mediterranean.
The environmental group says it is a new type of pollution. The main reason is that people litter, some people throw masks and gloves in the street, when it rains, the garbage will be washed into the sea.
The group predicts that, given the explosive use of masks, the number of abandoned masks in the Mediterranean may soon exceed the number of jellyfish. Masks usually contain plastics, such as polypropylene, that take 450 years to degrade when they flow into the ocean.
Laurent Lombard, director of Clean Oceans Action, said: “These protective devices, even if degraded, do not mean to disappear, but in the form of microplastics into the body of marine organisms and eventually into the food chain, and then we eat.” “
Most masks contain plastic ingredients and are designed as disposables. In early June, the French government announced that it would increase the fine for throwing masks to 135 euros from 68 euros previously, and that the fine could be increased to 750 euros depending on the severity.
In addition, a study by University College London found that if every Briton used a disposable mask every day of the year, 66,000 tonnes of contaminated plastic waste would be produced a year later, affecting climate change by ten times as much as using non-disposable masks.