Green Pulse Episode 26: Covid-19 tide of trash; and implications for marine life
Synopsis: Green Pulse is an environmental podcast series at The Straits Times which analyses the beat of the changing environment, from biodiversity conservation to climate change.
The Covid-19 lockdowns have led to improved environmental outcomes in some instances, such as improved air quality, but the outlook is not all rosy.
On the back of Singapore’s Year Toward Zero Waste in 2019, a survey done by alumni from the National University of Singapore’s Master of Science (Environmental Management) programme found that 1,334 tonnes of additional plastic waste, equivalent to the weight of 92 double-decker buses, was generated from takeaway and delivery meals within the 8-week circuit breaker period between April 7 and June 1.
Globally, the rise of disposables in the form of single-use plastics, face masks and personal protective equipment due to hygiene concerns has led to concerns that these items may end up as litter in public places, and eventually make their way into the ocean. This could have implications for marine biodiversity.
Tune in to this episode to find out more, as The Straits Times chats with Ms Shaleen Shahrin on the survey findings and Dr Neo Mei Lin, a marine biologist at the Tropical Marine Science Institute, National University of Singapore, on the implications of marine debris on life underwater.
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Edited by: Adam Azlee
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