Among the items found in the whale's stomach was a bag of a washing machine liquid, fishing nets, lines, tubes to name a few. Italian environment minister Sergio Costa wrote a Facebook post announcing widescale measures to protect oceans and ocean creatures from plastic pollution.
Common disposable plastic items may seem harmless. You order food from various food delivery services and dispose the packaging without knowing where it will land. Like it or not most of these end up in the ocean. According to Earth Day, as much as 8 million metric tons of plastic are thrown into the ocean every year. Want to know more? There will be more plastic in the oceans than there are fish (by weight) by 2050. Most of the living things in the ocean are not able to distinguish between food and plastic items and therefore eat them without knowing how dangerous it is for them. In Italy, a pregnant Sperm whale was found with 22 kilograms (47 pounds) of plastic in its stomach reports CNN. The carcass of the whale washed up on the shores of Sardina, an island off the Western coast of Italy. The fetus that the whale was carrying was stillborn. News about the whale and it's disturbing state was made known by Italy's environment minister, Sergio Costa, and a marine life non-profit. The case has highlighted the need for countries around the world and even common people to stop using plastic and plastic products. All around the world, no one appears to have a clue as to how plastic ends up in oceans.
There is a disconnect that governments in all countries need to bridge with information about the dire consequences of plastic waste. Costa highlighted the issue on his Facebook account by sharing a post about news of the dead mother whale. He wrote, "We have used in a light-hearted way the "comfort" of the disposable in these years and today we are paying the consequences, indeed they are paying above all, the animals." The dead whale washed up on a beach in the Sardinian tourist hotspot of Porto Cervo.
It contained "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." according to Luca Bittau, president of the SeaMe group. The sperm whale was eight meters (26 feet) long. The cause of death is yet to be determined and Bittau said that things would become clearer only after a proper histological and toxicological examination.
This is set to be carried out by veterinarians in Padua, northern Italy. Costa highlighted the prompt action that he and his government were bringing in the counter the problem of plastic in the ocean. In his Facebook post, Costa also spoke about the Salva Mare bill that is set to be tabled in front of country's Council of Ministers in the coming days. This is expected to "help these sea creatures because they will find much less plastic in the seas."
The new bill will address the problem of plastic and will also require the help of common fisherman folk "who can FINALLY bring all the plastic caught ashore," Costa wrote. He also wrote about a rule to ban plastic across Europe and said that Italy will be "one of the first countries" to implement these and that the "war on plastic has begun." He wrote: From 2021 it will begin to PROHIBIT the use and trade of the plastic throw-away. The European directive that established it was approved and I promise you that Italy will be one of the first countries to implement and implement it.
The European Parliament recently approved a law banning a wide-range of single-use plastic items, such as straws, cotton buds, and cutlery, by 2021. Costa also talked about hyperlocal actions at the level of cities. He wrote: In addition, I invite ALL mayors to make and sign ordinances on the ban on disposable plastics in their cities and on the Italian waterfronts such as Capri and mayor Luigi de Magistris in Naples. The war on disposable plastic has begun. And we won't stop here.
Just last month there was a case of a carcass of a young whale that washed up on the shores of the Philippines and died of "dehydration and starvation." On further examination, it was found that the whale had consumed 40 kilograms (88 pounds) of plastic bags. According to experts who spoke to CNN , the carcass was that of a juvenile male Cuvier's beaked whale who showed "signs of being emaciated and dehydration" and had been "vomiting blood before it died." According to the Earth Today article, many sea creatures who eat plastic often starve since they are not able to digest the plastic and hence not able to eat real food.