Trying to put a lid on plastic pollution.

Ocean plastic has been catapulted into mass public awareness and has result in a long overdue re-assessment of the function that it plays in our daily lives.

Straws and plastic carrier bags garnered a huge response with global campaigns aimed at reducing their use and ultimately, their disposal and loss into the ocean.

But there is a plastic item that is often overlooked, yet is persistently found in waterways and on beaches.

Plastic lids, for some inexplicable reason, are a common plastic item found washed up on beaches in the Southern Cape.

Thier robust construction and density make them buoyant and they can drift between 40km and 60km from their point of entry into the ocean before washing up on a beach.

Excluding micro plastics, they are the single most common class of plastic items that we record on our beach surveys.

To gain better insights into the density of washed up plastic lids, we have modified our CyberTracker app to include micro 10m surveys recording the number of lids, and where possible, which brand.

Spoiler alert, over 95% of the lids that we have surveyed have washed out to sea via rivers storm water drains and other drainage infrastructure that flows into the ocean.
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These lids were collected along 10m of beach at the high-water mark

Read more about our ocean research and follow our progress on our Strandloper Project coastal research expedition hike on the following social media platforms : Facebook, Instagram and Twitter

Make a Donation : You may not be in a position to personally document the extent of washed up plastic, but can support the research efforts of the Strandloper Project by donating to their GoGetFunding crowdfunding account.

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