Plastic straws vs. Fishing nets


Chloe Glackmeyer, Writer

According to research, “Scientists warn that unless we change our ways, there’ll be more plastic in them than fish by 2050’’, says Elisa Allen, Director of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Plastic straws account for 0.03% of the world’s oceans pollution, and fishing nets make up to 46% of ocean pollution. 

Banning plastic straws isn’t going to solve this crisis. Something bigger needs to arise from this disaster. Evidently, the fishing nets are the main source of ocean pollution. There are ways we can cut down on unnecessary plastics going into our oceans;, simply don’t eat fish or at the very least cut down on our consumption of seafood.  Not only are the millions of animals that live in the ocean are at risk, but we too as humans are also at risk. Studies found people are ‘’unknown willingly eating 11,000 milligrams of plastic’’ in their seafood. The less fishing there is, the less fishing products and fishing nets in the ocean slowly killing 50-80% of our world’s wildlife. For example, sharks bite roughly 70 people worldwide each year with about 5-15 fatalities, whereas fishing nets kill approximately 20-100 million sharks annually. 

It isn’t the fishing that is killing our seas, it’s the way it’s approached. Fish and sea mammals are getting caught in fishing nets preventing the animal from returning the surface and getting air causing them to drown. According to the Huffington Post, these plastic fishing nets are “…slowly degrading into small fragments and becoming part of the food chain” slowly, inevedibitly killing ocean life. Along with this issue there is no registry for fishing gear like nets and traps, so none of this killing devices can be traced back to the owner, allowing monetary fishers to get away with their misdoings.

There is enough time to do something before the damage becomes irreversible if we act fast.