Consumers are being urged to think about the amount of plastic they use, purchase and recycle.

October’s toxic nurdle spill in the Durban harbour set to motion a wave of clean-up operations on beaches across KwaZulu-Natal and heightened awareness about the dangers of plastic in the environment.

The tiny lentil shaped pellets are the raw material from which many plastic products are made and pose a threat to marine species.

Conservation strategist at the South African Association for Marine Biological Research – Doctor Judy Mann-Lang says, “If you think about plastics around you it’s everywhere. It is going to take an incredible mind shift change and it needs to happen at multiple levels so we need government and municipal levels to look at our waste management. “

“We need to look at the producers of the plastic they need to think about how they look at recycling more effectively. We need to look at all the packaging companies. Do we need all the packaging? Does my avocado need to come in four layers of plastic? Should we maybe walk out of the shop carefully unwrap everything and put it in a pile in the shop? If we did that every time we walked out of a shop people would start thinking about it.”