Fishing gear that’s been lost in bad weather, dumped or simply left behind makes up 10 percent of the debris found in oceans.
In the Baltic Sea alone, there is an estimated 1,000 kilometres of discarded fishing nets floating on the surface or deep below.
The nets catch and kill fish as well as marine mammals and birds that get tangled up in them. But there could be a solution to these so-called “ghost nets”.
A group of environmental organisations concluded a conference on the EU-funded project Marelitt Baltic in Stockholm on Thursday.
The project involved coming up with solutions for dealing with discarded fishing nets, among them how to retrieve the nets and recycle them.
Related stories from around the North:
Canada: Canada announces investments to tackle illegal fishing and discarded fishing gear, Radio Canada International
Finland: Citizens’ initiative prompts Finnish lawmakers to consider microplastics ban, Yle News
Norway: Urgent action needed to protect Arctic Ocean, WWF says, The Independent Barents Observer
Russia: Russian Navy sends clean-up team to Arctic trash dump, The Independent Barents Observer
Sweden: Swedish raft made from trash draws attention to plastic pollution, Radio Sweden
United States: Industry launches campaign to free oceans from plastic… how serious is it?, Alaska Public Media