400 TONNES OF WASTE DREDGED FROM THAMES
The River's rising tide of plastic rubbish...
MORE than 400 tonnes of rubbish were pulled out of the Thames last year, new figures have revealed.
The majority of the waste was plastic: a threat to wildlife along the waterway and at sea, according to the Port of London Authority, which looks after the tidal Thames. "We have noticed a discernible year-on-year increase in the amount of rubbish in the Thames," said the PLA's Martin Garside. "We get all sorts of rubbish, including street signs and driftwood, but the biggest problem is plastic."
The PLA has strategically placed rubbish collection rafts at eight points along the river in central London. They are regularly emptied and their contents put into landfill because much of it is too low-grade to be recycled. The waste is a problem for shipping, as it can get stuck in propellers. Wildlife is also put at risk, particularly seabirds. "The rubbish we don't manage to clean up ends up in the North Sea, where it also has an environmental impact," said Garside.
KEEP IT CLEAN
• There have been several Thames clean-ups, which included water firms spending £12bn in 1990 and 2005.
• Thames Water has two vessels, with each pumping 30 tonnes of oxygen a day into the river.
• Once known as "London's sewer", the Thames is now the cleanest metropolitan river in Europe, supporting 119 species of fish.
[From The London Paper]
|Contact Person||Lara Deauville|