Chasing the nurdles

In October last year during a major storm, 49 tons made up of 2 billion plastic nurdles, were released into the ocean when a ship’s cargo was compromised during the storm. To date, only 13.39 tons of those nurdles have been recovered meaning there is still 35 tons of plastic from this single spill, still floating around in the ocean. Considering the ocean currents that wash our shores there is a possibility, although quite remote, that some of these nurdles could be washed up on our shores and thus Chanel Gemae Hauvet’s appeal, following an appeal f from  Coast KZN sent to NSRI Stations around the South African coastline.

WHAT ARE NURDLES?

Nurdles are small plastic pellets about the size of a lentil. Countless billion are used each year to make nearly all our plastic products but many end up washing up on our shores. Spills and mishandling by industry can mean nurdles end up at sea. Our planets oceans are now accumulating nurdles in worryingly large numbers. Unlike large pieces of plastic marine litter, nurdles are so small that they go largely unnoticed. However scientists are becoming increasingly concerned about their effect on our delicate marine ecosystem as nurdles attract and concentrate background pollutants like DDT and PCBs to highly toxic levels and like other plastic, over time they just fragment into smaller and smaller plastic particles, are mistaken for prey by many marine animals and seabirds and enter the food chain..

Chanel’s post ……

“Hello St Francis, Paradise Beach, JBay an Oyster Bay

I would like to ask your assistance towards the conservation of our beautiful ocean and beaches. On October 10, 2017, there was a large Nurdle spill off the Durban coastline.  Although most nurdles have been washing up along the Durban/KZN coastline, some wash up along ours too. Every nurdle collected counts thus this appeal.

Nurdles are very small plastic pellets used as raw material in the manufacturing of plastic products. They attract harmful substances such as pesticides, herbicides and other pollutants as well as heavy metals that end up in the ocean, therefore they are harmful to life and should not be ingested. They never break down!

NSRI stations across the South African coastline have received Nurdle bins from WildOceans (a programme of the WILDTRUST), whose mission is to help clean up the nurdle spill, that has now spread along the South African coast. WildOceans, along with the Department of Environmental Affairs and SAAMBR, have commissioned 300 bins to be distributed along the entire coastline, which are there for us as a community to use as a nurdle collection point.

NSRI Station 21 St Francis Bay has a bin located at their base and I urge everybody to do their part. The Wildside on Cape St Francis , up to Oyster Bay is a specific stretch of coastline in our area where we may find washed up nurdles. I urge you all, to please keep a look out for and contribute to the collection of these little pellets and to drop them off at our local Station 21. If any of you have any Nurdles to contribute you can get a hold of us on 071 381 8922 (Tony Myles), 

Thank you

Chanel Gemae Hauvet”

For more information visit http://www.coastkzn.co.za/nurdles?Theme=4

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The Surprising Solution

The surprising solution to ocean plastic

This is worth listening to / watching, for Rotary St Francis Bay was doing exactly this by rewarding the kids and allowing them to buy goods from points earned on amount of recyclable goods they were able to bring to Gods Acre on Tarragona, Sadly the scum that exists in Sea Vista informal settlement put an end to it by robbing the wooden cabin of its door and windows and effectively stopping a program that was not only helping solve the plastic pollution, even in only a small way, but more importantly teaching the kids to recycle.. (See Sea Scouts compromised) .

Can we solve the problem of ocean plastic pollution and end extreme poverty at the same time? That’s the ambitious goal of The Plastic Bank: a worldwide chain of stores where everything from school tuition to cooking fuel and more is available for purchase in exchange for plastic garbage — which is then sorted, shredded and sold to brands who reuse “social plastic” in their products. Join David Katz to learn more about this step towards closing the loop in the circular economy. “Preventing ocean plastic could be humanity’s richest opportunity,” Katz says.

War against Plastic

St Francis Today joins the war on plastic pollution

the ball rolling by supplying paper shopping bags and even swopping plastic for paper.  We can also make a difference by buying goods packaged in glass rather than plastic where the is alternative choice.

No doubt readers have ideas on how we can fight this plastic scourge so please share them by joining the conversation below by sharing your suggestions below. We all have to start making a difference.