RIVERS - INDEX A TO Z

 

 

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SKY DECEMBER 2017 - According to the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Leipzig, the Yangtze was the worst offender, reference research published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology. This Chinese river carries up to 1.5 million tonnes of plastic into the sea every year. In contrast, the Thames in the UK puts 18 tonnes of plastic into the ocean.

 

 

Around ninety percent (90%) of plastics in the ocean comes from just 10 rivers. Nine of these rivers are located in Asia and one of them borders Thailand.

 

The top 10 most polluted rivers in the world have one thing in common – they are located alongside large human populations with poor waste management (PWM) systems.

 

Previous research has found about one-fifth of total ocean plastic trash comes from marine activities – plastic tossed from fishing boats, ships, drilling platforms and so on. The four-fifths from land totals 4.8 million to 12.7 million tonnes a year.

While most plastic comes from coastal cities and towns, where plastic litter is washed into storm drains and flows into the sea, new research by scientists from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research and the Weihenstephan-Triesdorf University of Applied Science (both in Germany) highlights the importance of better management of upstream systems to reduce the significant proportion of plastic transferred via rivers.

Their paper, published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, calculates that rivers contribute between 410,000 and 4 million tonnes a year to oceanic plastic debris, with 88 to 95% coming from only 10.

 

Once the plastic is washed out to sea, it harder to track and collect. Confirmed plastic hot-spots would be prime targets for SeaVax machines operating in RiverVax mode.

 

River exits are a logical target if we want to start cleaning up our oceans cost effectively.

 

 

 

HOLY GANGA - The Ganges is considered to be the fifth most polluted river in the world. It contains human waste and industrial contaminants, but provides water for about 40% of India's population, yet millions of Indians depending on it for their daily needs. In 2015 this river was considered to be the 2nd worst polluter.

 

 

RIVER

COUNTRY

POPULATION

PLASTIC

-

-

-

-

Amazon

Brazil/Peru/ Ecuador

-

1

Amur

Russia/China

-

2

Brantas

Indonesia

-

3

Buriganga

Bangladesh

-

4

Citarum

Indonesia

-

5

Congo

West Central Africa

-

6

Cross

Nigeria/Cameroon

-

7

Cuyahoga 

USA

-

8

Ganges

India/Bangladesh

-

9

Danube

Europe

-

10

Dong

China

-

11

Hai He (Sea)

China

-

12

Hanjiang

China

-

13

Huangpu

China

-

14

Irrawaddy

Myanmar

-

15

Imo

Nigeria

-

16

Indus

Pakistan/Himalayan

-

17

Irtysh

Russia/China/Kazakhstan

-

18

Jordan

Israel

-

19

Kwa Ibo

Nigeria

-

20

Lena

Siberia

-

21

Magdalena

Columbia

-

22

Mantanza-Riachuelo

Argentina

-

23

Marilao

Philippines

-

24

Mississippi

USA

-

25

Mekong

Thailand/Laos/Vietnam

-

26

Niger

Guinea/Nigeria

-

27

Nile

Egypt

-

28

Parana

S America/Brazil

-

29

Pasig

Philippines

-

30

Progo

Java/Indonesia

-

31

Sarno

Italy

-

32

Serayu

Indonesia

-

33

Solo

Java/Indonesia

-

34

Tamsui

Taiwan

-

35

Xi 

China

-

36

Yamuna

India

-

37

Yangtze

China

-

38

Yellow/Huang He

China

-

30

Zhujiang/Pearl

China

-

40

 

 

Every year the world, produces 300 million tonnes of plastics, and 8.8 million tonnes of these are dumped into the oceans. That’s about 40 billion plastic bottles, 100 billion single-use plastic bags, and 522 million personal care items.

Disturbingly, 270,000 tonnes of these plastics are merely floating around on the ocean surface. That is more than 5 trillion individual pieces when broken down, excluding the millions of microplastic particles.

 

Approximately 700 marine species are in danger of extinction because of plastic pollution.

 

If you know a seriously polluted river, or one that should be a candidate on a bigger list, please contact Cleaner Ocean Foundation.

 

The rivers noted, added to hundreds of other lesser contributors feed the five ocean gyres.

 

1. North Atlantic Gyre

2. South Atlantic Gyre

3. Indian Ocean Gyre

4. North Pacific Gyre

5. South Pacific Gyre

 

 

Rivers export of plastic to the sea, Schmidt et al 2017

 

SCHMIDT OCT 2017 - A substantial fraction of marine plastic debris originates from land-based sources. Rivers potentially act as a major transport pathway for all sizes of plastic debris. 

 

 

Map of the world river plastic hotspots, Laurent et al 2017

 

LAURENT LEBRETON 2017 - Mass of river plastic flowing into oceans in tonnes per year. River contributions are derived from individual watershed characteristics such as population density, mismanaged plastic waste (MPW) production per country and monthly averaged runoff. The model is calibrated against river plastic concentration measurements from Europe, Asia, North and South America.

 

 

Map of the world plastic river hot spots 2015, Jambeck et all

 

JENNA JAMBECK 2015 - Global map with each country shaded according to the estimated mass of mismanaged plastic waste [millions ofmetric tons (MT)] generated in 2010 by populations living within 50 km of the coast. 192 countries were considered. Countries not included in the study are shaded white.

 

 

 

FAST FOOD SLOW RECOVERY - If we all work together we can significantly impact on scenes like this. We have been enjoying the benefits of plastic without ensuring that this durable medium does not unduly affect marine life. Unfortunately, retrospective measures will take longer to achieve equilibrium, but we must act now if we want to prevent more plastic than fish in the sea by 2050. Fortunately, many of the top producers are now looking at circularizing with a view to preventing ocean waste, such as the Alliance to End Plastic Waste.

 

 

LINKS & REFERENCE

 

https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15611#t1

https://cosmosmagazine.com/biology/just-10-rivers-to-blame-for-millions-of-tonnes-of-ocean-plastic

https://news.sky.com/story/just-10-rivers-carry-90-of-plastic-polluting-the-oceans-11167581

https://thethaiger.com/thai-life/top-10-most-plastic-polluted-rivers-in-the-world-2019

https://earthbuddies.net/citarum-river-indonesia/

 

 

 

 

 

 AMAZON - BURIGANGA - CITARUM - CONGO - CUYAHOGA - GANGES - IRTYSH - JORDAN  - LENA - MANTANZA-RIACHUELO

MARILAO - MEKONG - MISSISSIPPI - NIGER - NILE - PARANA - PASIG - SARNO - THAMES - YANGTZE - YAMUNA - YELLOW

 

 

 

ABS - BIOMAGNIFICATION - CANCER - CARRIER BAGS - COTTON BUDS - DDT - FISHING NETS - HEAVY METALS - MARINE LITTER - MICROBEADS

MICRO PLASTICS - NYLON - OCEAN GYRES - OCEAN WASTE -  PACKAGING - PCBS - PET - PETROLEUM - PLASTIC - PLASTICS -  POLYCARBONATE

POLYOLEFINS - POLYPROPYLENE - POLYSTYRENE - POLYTHENE - POPS PVC - SHOES - SINGLE USE - SOUP - STRAWS - WATER

 

 

PLEASE USE OUR A-Z INDEX TO NAVIGATE THIS SITE

 

This website is provided on a free basis as a public information service. copyright © Cleaner Oceans Foundation Ltd (COFL) (Company No: 4674774) 2019. Solar Studios, BN271RF, United Kingdom. COFL is a company without share capital.

 

MOST POLLUTED RIVERS IN THE WORLD A TO Z INDEX PLASTIC