Did “plastic hail” fall on Baku beaches? Environmental activists sound alarm
Plastic hail on the beaches of Baku
A large amount of plastic granules, the origin of which is unknown, have washed up on two Baku beaches, as reported by activists of the environmental movement Ecofront. The Ministry of Ecology said that it is conducting an inspection. It is thought the granules may have been brought to Azerbaijan by an undercurrent from other Caspian countries.
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A large amount of plastic granules was found on the coast of the Baku villages of Geradil and Fatmai. The strange discovery was first reported by activists from the environmental movement Ecofront.
This plastic is dangerous for waterfowl and marine life, activists said. “Plastic must be removed from the coast as soon as possible, and the source must be found and eliminated,” Ecofront said in its appeal to the Ministry of Ecology and the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
According to experts, plastic granules are a product of primary oil refining used in the production of plastic products.
Most likely the release of plastic pellets occurred as a result of an accident on a cargo ship, environmental expert Rovshan Abbasov said.
“Where the accident occurred is still unknown: the granules could have been brought to Azerbaijan by an undercurrent from the waters of one of the Caspian countries,” he added.
Abbasov ruled out pollution by the population, since local residents do not have access to plastic granules.
“The result of contamination of water and coast with plastic can be seen in the near future — fish and birds that have eaten polymers will die,” Abbasov warned.
The Ministry of Ecology of Azerbaijan stated that the cause is being investigated.
The news about this “plastic hail” caused some reaction on social networks:
“The relevant authorities are waiting for the situation to worsen a little more and to decide on activities from which they can pocket money.”
“If no one takes action, I urge my friends to clean the area up themselves.”
“I don’t believe that government agencies have no information about what happened. If they are not aware, they are not doing their job.”
Municipalities solve the problem
The municipality of the Binagadi district of Baku took up cleaning of the plastic-polluted shore.
“Polymer granules covered about a kilometer of the coastline,” Vagif Javadov, a spokesman for the State Environmental Security Service, stated.
“They were brought to the shore by water. A container with plastic could have accidentally gotten into the water during transportation and then washed ashore in a wave, ”he said.
Specialists from Azerbaijani enterprises for the production of polyethylene materials, who examined the shore, claim that these polymers do not belong to them.