Nurdle hunt highlights plastic pollution
‘What on earth is a nurdle?’, you may be asking. Nurdles are small plastic pellets about the size of a lentil, which attract and concentrate background pollution like DDT and PCBs to highly toxic levels and can end up in the food chain when eaten by fish, birds and other marine animals. Nurdles never go away, but simply break down into ever smaller and smaller pieces of plastic. Hastings Green Party want to raise awareness of the issue. HOT’s Zelly Restorick writes.
According to the Nurdle Hunt website, ‘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 planet’s 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’.
Want to get involved in your own personal hurdle hunt?
If you wanted to take a look for yourself – or get your company or school or organisation involved, then please take a look at the guide to make sure you take the necessary care: Tips to Help You Hunt for Nurdles and watch this video:
Local nurdle hunt
Scottish campaign organisation, Fidra organised The Great Nurdle Hunt asking people to hunt for nurdles on their local beaches over the weekend of 3-5 February, in order to gain a picture of how beaches around the country are affected by plastics pollution. Results will be collated and presented to the government as part of their microbeads consultation.
Hastings Green Party members recently carried out a ‘nurdle hunt’ on the fishing beach in the town, with a small group finding over 300 nurdles in just an hour. Spokesperson Julia Hilton said: ‘Our results show that Hastings is badly affected by plastics pollution. We wanted to take part in the Nurdle Hunt to highlight the issue locally, and to provide evidence to be used in submissions to the government about the seriousness of this issue, and the need to take action to prevent these tiny pieces of plastic polluting the world’s seas.’
Operation Clean Sweep
This is part of a wider global programme called Operation Clean Sweep, originally designed by the plastics industry and supported by The British Plastics Federation and PlasticsEurope. If your company wishes to ‘implement and become a member of the Operation Clean Sweep® programme for the protection of aquatic and marine environment’, you can sign the Operation Clean Sweep Pledge here.
To find out more about what’s happening locally, check out Hastings Green Party and/or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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