Mumbai, India (06:43)
Thomas Moore and Afroz Shah tour an Indian beach covered in plastic waste. Shah recalls playing in clear waters with friends and is horrified by the pollution. He started a massive cleaning project.
United Kingdom (10:14)
Marine Biologist Richard Thompson discusses plastic benefits, permeation, and consequences; single use products are problematic. London sewers and the Thames River contain debris that degrades into microplastics and eventually enters the food web.
Texel, Netherlands (04:18)
During postmortem examination, Dr. Jan Van Franeker finds plastics in seabirds, estimating six tons ingested by North Sea fulmars annually. When they die, debris breaks down into microplastics and enters the food web.
Puducherry, India (06:40)
Off India's southeast coast, fishing gear catches on the reef, entangling marine life; conservationists free two turtles. Artist Jeremy Carroll beachcombs for plastics, staging photographs that bring attention to ecology and environmental impacts.
Ghent, Belgium (04:27)
Belgians enjoy steamed mussels and unintentionally eat thousands of microplastics annually. Ecotoxicologist Colin Janssen analyzes a catch, finding microscopic bits in stomachs and tissues. Scientists learn that degraded debris crosses into the bloodstream, but are uncertain of its effects.
Andaman and Nicobar Islands (02:52)
ReefWatch Conservationist Roshni Yathiraj reports that plastics stuck in coral crevices are fed upon by various creatures; bags are banned her area. Waste travels to the open oceans, accumulating in circulating masses in five great gyres across the planet.
Arrochar, Scotland (03:40)
Mary Haggerty recalls the loch being clear when she was a child. During high tides, plastic debris from around the world lands on the coast, economically impacting the community; tourists go elsewhere and residents sell homes.
Collaborative Efforts (04:55)
Shah and project volunteers work for 62 weeks to clean Mumbai beaches; they urge locals to begin cleaning efforts. In the Netherlands, Belgium, and London, scientists and conservationists aspire to change ideas about consumerism.
Credits: A Plastic Tide (00:33)
Credits: A Plastic Tide
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