Monday, December 14, 2020

Face Masks Trigger a Tidal Wave of Marine Pollution

A report “Masks on the Beach: The Impact of Covid-19 on Marine Plastic Pollution” released on December 07, 2020 calculates that more than 1.56 billion discarded face masks used as a preventive measure to contain the coronavirus transmission will enter oceans in 2020, aggravating plastic pollution and threatening marine life.

These disposed non-biodegradable masks made from polypropylene, weighing between 4,680 and 6,240 metric tonnes, could take at least 450 years to degrade. Microplastics released by them would enter the body of marine creatures and severely impacting their life cycle. 

Dr. Teale Phelps Bondaroff (right), lead author of the report and director of research for OceansAsia, a Hong Kong-based marine conservation organization says: "[These] face masks are just a small fraction of the estimated 8 to 12 million metric tonnes of plastic that enter our oceans each year". Even so, it is claimed that around 52 billion masks have been manufactured in 2020 as part of pandemic prevention efforts. 

Indeed, the amount of global plastic waste in the ocean is expected to triple at the end of 2090, resulting in more plastics than marine creatures! 

Two matches I followed on Sunday. 

A Mohamed Elyounoussi strike in the fifty-seventh minute and a Shane Duffy header in the seventieth minute gave Celtic a first win in three Scottish Premiership games to earn boss Neil Lennon further breathing space.


Lennon's side go second with this 2-0 win over Kilmarnock – but 13 points behind Rangers with two games in hand. 

Liverpool again played poorly – in fact, they were very fortunate to come away with a 1-1 draw from a Premier League game in which they were second best for large periods to an impressive Fulham. 

And their one point came from a penalty which Mohamed Salah converted only in the seventy-ninth minute.

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