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3 posts from March 2006

March 28, 2006

Sand, sea and a rising tide of lethal litter

The Scottsman

THE number of plastic bags littering Scotland's beaches - potentially lethal to wildlife - increased by 41 per cent last year, against a national increase of 17 per cent.

Thousands of Marine Conservation Society (MCS) volunteers on a check-and-clean exercise last September also found 66 cigarette stubs for every kilometre of Scottish beach, a 273 per cent increase on the year. They were among the 330,000 items found on more than 170km of Britain's coastline by 3,980 volunteers - on average a plastic bag, lollipop stick, cigarette butt, cotton bud, fish box or burger carton every half-metre.

That total was a modest 4 per cent increase on the year. But in a decade, the count has almost doubled...

Link: Sand, sea and a rising tide of lethal litter.

March 24, 2006

In praise of a hidden household hero

BBC News

Anger over plastic bags is misplaced, says Jane Bickerstaffe in The Green Room this week. Their environmental impact is negligible, she argues, and taxing them can cause more serious damage.

The humble and much maligned thin plastic carrier bag is at least as much a household hero as the pantomime villain it is often (mis)cast to be.

A recent UK government-funded initiative to look at ways to reduce use of thin bags found that people don't want more re-usable "Bags for Life" - they already have plenty in their homes - they just forget to take them to the shops!

Link: In praise of a hidden household hero.

March 12, 2006

Littering of beaches endangers wildlife

Suffolk & Essex online

A RISING tide of plastic bags is littering East Anglia's beaches and endangering wildlife, according to a report published today.

The report, by the Marine Conservation Society, is based on surveys carried out in September last year and suggests that more litter was dropped on the region's beaches than in 2004.

Andrea Crump, the society's litter projects co-ordinator, said: “It is disappointing but the situation in East Anglia and the rest of the South-East of England is considerably better than the South-West where much more litter is dropped.”

East Anglia is included in the regional results for the South East which show that an average of 1,847 items of litter were found along every kilometre of the 87 beaches surveyed.

Link: Littering of beaches endangers wildlife.