The ocean has become yet another victim of the global coronavirus crisis. According to research published by the Environmental Science & Technology magazine, plastic pollution in the oceans is on pace to experience a 30 percent increase from levels seen from just over a year ago.
The cause? PPE face masks and people’s carelessness about how to manage plastic waste has led to an increase in COVID-related litter.
With over a million deaths and more than 40 million people infected globally, the COVID-19 pandemic has turned the planet upside down. The unemployment rate continues to grow, economies are spiraling downward, and people are facing growing dissatisfaction with the way their governments are handling the disease.
As the United Nations said in a recent article regarding plastic contamination, historical data suggests that “75 percent of the used masks, as well as other pandemic-related waste, will end up in landfills or floating in the seas.”