Ghost Gear highlighted to Duke of Cornwall at Ocean Plastic Solutions Day
World Animal Protection attended the Ocean Plastic Solutions Day on 12 July, to talk about the trailblazing Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) we established in 2015 to fight the scourge of deadly lost and abandoned plastic fishing gear.
The event brought together organisations and activists committed to finding solutions to the ocean plastic crisis, and was honoured by a visit from HRH The Duke of Cornwall, known for his advocacy on marine and environmental issues. It was organised by leading environmental organisation Surfers against Sewage and the sustainable clothing company Finisterre.
We highlighted the impact of lost fishing lines and nets, also known as Ghost Gear, which kills and injures more than 100,000 marine animals each year. We shared examples of how seafood companies and food retailers can prevent Ghost Gear being left in the sea and the great work of our partners to retrieve it from the ocean and recycle it, creating economic opportunities for coastal communities.
Ghost Gear is by far the deadliest form of plastic to marine animals and is estimated to be four times as harmful as all other forms of marine debris combined. Cornwall has an important population of grey seals, who are playful and inquisitive animals and can easily become trapped in ghost gear and sustain horrendous injuries and even starve to death or die from their injuries.
The Ocean Plastic Solutions Day included inspiring speakers such as world-class free-diver, Hanli Prinsloo, United Nations Patron for the Oceans, Lewis Pugh, and Richard Walker from Iceland Supermarkets who talked about the supermarket’s plastic-free campaign.
Find out more about our work fighting the issue of Ghost Gear here.