Concern is growing over the threat that widespread plastic waste poses to marine life, with conservative estimates of the overall financial damage of plastics to marine ecosystems standing at US$13 billion each year, according to two reports released on the opening day of the first United Nations Environment Assembly.
The Mediterranean Sea is a “key pillar” for the development of the countries in the region, a senior United Nations official said today, warning that continued degradation of the aquatic environment could put its entire ecology at risk.
The call came as delegates from 22 Mediterranean and European Union countries brought their three-day meeting on safeguarding and promoting a clean and healthy Mediterranean environment to a close in Paris.
Millions of tonnes of plastic debris dumped each year in the world's oceans could pose a lethal threat to whales, according to a scientific assessment to be presented at a key international whaling forum this week.
A review of research literature from the last two decades reveals hundreds of cases in which cetaceans - an order including 80-odd species of whales, dolphins and porpoises - have been sickened or killed by marine litter.