Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Stop Plastic Pollution and the Killing of Wildlife

Jean-Michel Cousteau has a life changing PBS video which shows an expedition to the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI). They are the most remote islands on the planet and serve as reminders of what many other reefs used to be, crowded with wildlife and nearly unspoiled. Their isolation, however, has not been able to protect them completely. The photos show the remote island covered in trash and plastic. This is not from human life on the island but rather from trash floating around the oceans and collecting in this area. He shows photos of dead birds whose stomachs are full of trash; the trash causing the death of the bird. Some of the items on the beach haven't even been manufactured since the 1960s. This shows how much trash there actually is in the ocean and the environmental consequences of it. 
Jean Michel Cousteau picking a lighter out of a dead birds stomach.
Photo Courtesy of Ocean Futures Society
A toothbrush, pencil and lighter were found in the gut of this bird.
photo courtesy of Ocean Futures Society

Jean MIchel Cousteau walking on what should be a clean beach
Photo courtesy of Ocean Futures Society

Not only Jean Michel Cousteau, but everyone needs to make an effort to keep our ocean and waterways clean. On my last trip to the Colorado River I was paddling by the reeds and was shocked by how much trash there was. My dad and I collected a lot of it on our stand up paddle boards. It is super sad to see how much trash we collected on less than 1/2 mile paddle. The main point is that if everyone picks up a little trash while doing the activities they love, it creates a cleaner and healthier environment. 

All of the trash collected on our stand up paddle board

A full size plastic trash can stuck in the reeds

We need to Keep our Ocean and Waterways clean. Please help Body Glove and Jean Michel Cousteau by visiting the Ocean Futures Society and find out about ways that you can help. 

~ Jenna Meistrell

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