Press "Enter" to skip to content

Coronavirus Contamination: Vinyl masks and Masks Have Been already littering the seabed, campaigners warn

Discarded surgical masks and plastic gloves littering the seabed: would this be the newest ugly face of the coasts following the coronavirus pandemic?

French ecological NGO Opération Mer Propre (Operation Clean Sea) is sounding the alarm on a new kind of waste piling along with this longtime jolt of plastic pollution.

“It is just the start,” the band’s co-founder Joffrey Peltier informed Euronews.

Diving near the French Riviera resort of Antibes to clean up the garbage, the NGO discovered face masks and masks cluttering the Mediterranean seabed along with other garbage such as vacant cups and beer cans.

Its creator Laurent Lombard, published the movie, composed as a caption: “Do you prefer to have a dip with COVID-19 summertime?”

In the road to the sea

If waste isn’t properly thrown into a garbage bin, but in the road or the sidewalk, it will generally fall to a gutter, mix with rain, and also be washed out into a river or the sea, then Peltier clarified.

“All it requires is a small rain or wind and everything ends up right into the sea,” he explained.

Opération Mer Propre is calling on individuals to act responsibly and prevent cluttering the roads. It is also begging to get a change away from disposable masks, plastic containers, and gloves to decrease pollution at the origin.

“We must shield ourselves from COVID-19, however, I do not think plastic is the sufficient answer,” Peltier said.

“We can wear reusable masks and wash our hands instead of utilizing hydroalcoholic because we are now also beginning to obtain these gel bottles at the sea”

Peltier welcomed the thought but increased doubts regarding its authorities.

“Maybe, regrettably, we ought to make an environmental police force,” he explained.

Protecting our oceans

Authorities and environmental leaders have been holding an internet seminar about protecting the planet’s oceans this past week.

This season, it is going to concentrate on combating water pollution and constructing a blue market. It is going to also launch UpLink, a brand new platform to crowd-source tips for sustainability endeavors.

“I expect that we do not spend time assessing the individual each se, however, we all examine alternatives and also remind ourselves that the sea (…) is a part of our wellbeing and human prosperity,” Kristian Teleki, the director of Friends of Ocean Action, informed Euronews at a live TV interview.

The UN estimates that 13 million tonnes of plastic are thrown from the sea every year and half of those plastic generated worldwide is for single-use products.

The sight of lost masks littering the Med sharply contrasts with much more favorable images of character benefiting from coronavirus lockdowns. Residents of Venice have discovered just how much cleaner the town’s canals appeared in the lack of visitors and ship traffic.

“Some of those things that we have seen in Venice provide us expect that little changes in behavior may have a significant impact,” Teleki stated.