Document Type

Article

Abstract

The presence of marine debris and microplastics in the Earth’s oceans are a global environmental issue. Bermuda’s location in the middle of the North Atlantic Gyre makes it the perfect case study for this work. As the crisis unfolds, Bermuda’s environment, economy, and population are at risk of witnessing firsthand the effects of plastic pollution. This paper relies on scholarly research as well as anecdotal evidence from retail stores and locals to compile information in order to provide necessary recommendations to benefit Bermuda’s ocean health. This research evaluates the pros and cons of policies which could mitigate the problem. Analysis of these policies has led to three major recommendations for the island of Bermuda, based on the foundation that small changes lead to larger long-term benefits. It is suggested that local businesses should provide incentives to consumers to reduce their use of single-use plastic. Marine debris and microplastic task forces should serve an educational purpose in schools around the island. Lastly, it was identified that Bermuda lacks quantifiable data with regards to their own plastic consumption as well as recycling schemes. Bermuda’s ability to pursue such recommendations could have long-term lasting benefits on their ocean’s health. Marine debris and microplastics are an expansive global epidemic, while this work focuses solely on the small island of Bermuda it is important to address that this epidemic reaches all corners of the globe.

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