Plastic pollution in oceans and other bodies of water continues to grow sharply and could more than double by 2030, bringing about dire consequences for health, economy, biodiversity, and the climate, according to an assessment released on Thursday by the UN Environment Program (UNEP).
The text titled 'From Pollution to Solution: a global assessment of marine litter and plastic pollution, indicated that in 2015, greenhouse emissions from plastics were 1.7 gigatons of CO2 equivalent, by 2050, they´re projected to increase about 6.5 gigatons.
Plastics make up the biggest, most destructive, and a longest-lasting component of marine litter, accounting for 85 percent of all marine litter, according to experts.
On the other hand, this report presents the most compelling scientific evidence to date for the need to act now, as well as for collaborative action to safeguard and restore our oceans from source to sea.
It also includes a detailed update on current studies on direct effects on marine life, health hazards, and social and economic consequences.
When it comes to remedies, the writers cast doubt on our ability to recycle our way out of the plastic pollution dilemma.
To reduce waste, they suggest accelerating the transition to renewables, eliminating subsidies, and adopting circular approaches.