Dead Whale Had 1,000 Pieces Of Plastic Inside Its Stomach - Including Flip-Flops

Dead Whale Had 1,000 Pieces Of Plastic Inside Its Stomach - Including Flip-Flops

The use of throwaway plastic is a particular problem in some South East Asian countries, including Indonesia.

It was discovered after reports that locals had gathered around the carcass to butcher it for meat, according to the park's chief, Heri Santoso.

Marine conservation officials said it was not possible to determine if the plastic had caused the whale's death because of the animal's advanced state of decay.

Upon further examination of the dead whale, it was found to have swallowed almost six kilograms of plastic waste.

Researchers collect samples from the carcass of a dead whale at Wakatobi National Park in Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia. Wildlife conservation group WWF and authorities found about 5.9kg of plastic waste in the mammal's stomach, including 115 plastic cups, 4 plastic bottles, 25 plastic bags, 2 flip-flops, a nylon sack and more than 1,000 assorted pieces of plastic.

Research shows that the majority of plastic that enters the ocean comes from Indonesia and four other countries in the region - China, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand - according to a 2015 report by environmental campaigner Ocean Conservancy and the McKinsey Center for Business and Environment. A United Nations report says each year, humanity dumps 8 million tonnes of plastic in the sea, costing at least $8 billion in damage to marine ecosystems.

These statistics make for grim reading, especially when the diversity and variety of Indonesia's marine life is taken into consideration.

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Indonesia's coordinating minister for maritime affairs, Luhut Binsar Panddjaitan, said more needed to be done to create awareness about the impact of plastic waste in our oceans.

He said: "I'm so sad to hear this".

A dead whale has washed ashore with a large amount of plastic waste found inside his stomach.

The Indonesia government has been taking steps to encourage shops to end the use of plastic bags, as well as teaching students in schools about plastic waste.

While it's unclear why the animals are consuming plastic, Trites said it's likely that they're either mistaking the waste for food or treating it like toy, adding that "it's accumulating if they're not able to get rid of it".

"This big ambition can be achieved if people learn to understand that plastic waste is a common enemy", Pandjaitan told The Associated Press.

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