It is possibly the single-most toxic thing that's found in shocking abundance in the environment right now, but still, the use of plastics is nowhere as low as we need it to be.
Recently, a dead pregnant sperm whale was found on a sandy beach in a country that attracts millions of tourists each year. The massive whale, that was recovered from the Italian coast, was with about 49 pounds of plastic next to a dead fetus, reported CNN. The animal, which was 26 feet long had washed up at a tourist spot, in Sardinia, Italy. The nature of the death of yet another whale has served as a stark reminder of the immediate need to do something about the excess plastic waste produced by humans.
“I never saw such big quantity of plastic,” said Luca Bittau, a marine biologist at SEAME Sardinia, a nonprofit organization to National Geographic. He said that they found almost everything we use at our homes in the belly of the poor mammal. "garbage bags ... fishing nets, lines, tubes, the bag of a washing machine liquid still identifiable, with brand and barcode ... and other objects no longer identifiable," said the biologist. He also added that the fetus could not be saved, "She was pregnant and had almost certainly aborted before (she) beached. The fetus was in an advanced state of decomposition," said Luca.
Italian Environment Minister, Sergio Costa responded to the horrifying incident through a Facebook post. "Are there still people who say these are not important problems? For me they are, and they are priorities," Costa said. It is possibly the single-most toxic thing that's found in shocking abundance in the environment right now, but still, the use of plastics is nowhere as low as we need it to be.
The minister reminded people that taking actions to combat marine litter was not just the duty of one country but the responsibility of mankind in general. "We've used the 'comfort' of disposable objects in a light-hearted way in the past years and now we are paying the consequences. Indeed the animals, above all, are the ones paying them," said the Costa.
Costa also told that by 2021, Italy will be among the first European nations to abide by the law banning single-use plastics. The incident that occurred in Italy should not be taken lightly as similar incidents were reported from different parts of the world. According to BBC News, a dead whale with 88 pounds of plastic was found in the Philippines. The whale stomach was filled with around 16 rice sacks and many more plastic bags. In November 2018, a dead whale found on the shores of Indonesia had large amounts of plastic in its stomach from plastic bags to flip flops.