Over 200,000 tonnes of plastic leaking into the Mediterranean each year – IUCN reportNovember 02, 2020
Widely regarded as one of the most threatened environments in the world, the Mediterranean Sea is subject to a now ubiquitous, man-made disaster: plastic pollution.
A new IUCN report ‘The Mediterranean: Mare Plasticum’, funded by MAVA, finds that an estimated 229,000 tonnes of plastic is leaking into the Mediterranean Sea every year, equivalent to over 500 shipping containers each day. Unless significant measures are taken to address mismanaged waste, the main source of the leakage, this will at least double by 2040.
The top three countries contributing to plastic leakage are Egypt, Italy and Turkey. Plastic hotspots tend to appear near the mouth of major rivers (e.g. the Nile) and close to large cities or urban areas.