Ghost Gear

Plastic refuse fouling the oceans is a major contributor to sea life decline. The primary source of sizable marine plastic is fishermen who are negligently destroying their own livelihoods.

Over 640,000 metric tonnes of fishing gear are dumped into the sea every year. Greenpeace reports: “Spreading throughout the ocean on tides and currents, lost and discarded fishing gear is now drifting to Arctic coastlines, washing up on remote Pacific islands, entangled on coral reefs and littering the deep seafloor.”

Governmental indifference exacerbates the problem. Greenpeace: “Poor regulation and slow political progress in creating ocean sanctuaries that are off-limits to industrial fishing allow this problem to exist and persist.”


Sandra Laville, “Dumped fishing gear is biggest plastic polluter in ocean, finds report,” The Guardian (5 November 2019).