Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia
Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia

Coronavirus face masks that end up in the sea will take 450 years to degrade, marine conservation group warns

  • Discarded surgical face masks will add to the mountain of plastic we disgorge into the oceans every year that poisons the fish we eat, conservationists say
  • OceansAsia urges people to switch to reusable masks, but in Hong Kong that could be a tough ask: city has low adoption of fashionable, home-made and cloth masks

Topic |   Coronavirus pandemic
Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia
Gary Stokes, operations director with Hong Kong-based marine conservation organisation OceansAsia, says that plastic consumption has risen significantly worldwide due to the pandemic, with single-use Covid-19 face masks now posing a huge environmental threat to the planet. Photo: Courtesy of OceansAsia
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