U.N. Environment Chief Warns “We’re Facing an Ocean Armageddon”

U.N. Environment Assembly aims to restore healthy oceans and end pollution for good.

“We’re facing an ocean Armageddon: Every year, we’re dumping at least 8 million tons of plastics into our oceans,” Erik Solheim, U.N. Environment Executive Director, told CBS News. The U.N. Environment Assembly kicked-off Monday, December 4, in Nairobi, Kenya, with the main goal of restoring healthy oceans. The assembly began with 7,000 delegates from around the world and 100 ministers, making it the highest level decision-making body on the environment.

Although the Nairobi conference is focused on all forms of pollution: air, chemical, freshwater, land and soil, marine and waste, marine pollution is getting the most attention. Why? Ocean pollution affects many countries and has readily available solutions.

Solheim said, “At the current rate, we’ll end up with more plastic in the oceans than fish by the middle of the century, and ultimately that comes back to our own food chain.”

According to a recent study published in the Marine Pollution Bulletin, ocean acidification and pollution can exert combined effects on the functions and services of marine ecosystems.

“We need to understand that if we kill our oceans, we also kill ourselves.”

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