September 21, 2018
Plastics threatening NZ seabirds
MPs have been told New Zealand has a major plastic crisis, and it’s threatening the country’s seabirds.
Forest & Bird told parliament's environment committee yesterday marine-seasoned microplastics produce a substance that attracts seabirds, so they think they are eating food.
Spokesperson Karen Baird says New Zealand supports more seabirds than land birds, including albatrosses, petrels, tītī and oi, some of which breed nowhere else.
"There’s around 86 types of seabirds breeding in New Zealand. That represents nearly a third of world species so we have the highest number of breeding seabird endemics in the world," she says.
Forest & Bird wants New Zealand to create a circular economy for plastics and to back United Nations Environment Assembly efforts to create an international agreement on marine litter and microplastics.
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