Plastic pollution threatens tourism

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Plastic pollution accumulating on the coastline decreases the number of visitors, and this will not only reduce the revenue generated by the tourism sector, states a report released by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Picture: Pasifika News

Plastic pollution accumulating on the coastline decreases the number of visitors, and this will not only reduce the revenue generated by the tourism sector, but can also have a significant impact on the number of people employed in this sector, states a report released by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

The report, titled “The economic impact of plastic pollution and the benefits of reducing mismanaged waste in Fiji” states the tourism sector in Fiji supports over 118,000 jobs.

“The multifaceted structure of the tourism sector implies that it has strong links with other sectors, and channels spending into local supply chains, including agriculture, building and construction, cultural industries, and more,” the report read.

“Any impact on the tourism sector will thus also affect these sectors.

“Marine plastic pollution has a negative impact on fisheries revenue, and consequently, on the number of people employed in the fisheries sector.

“Coastal subsistence fishers in Fiji account for 65 per cent of coastal fishing activity.

“Fish makes an important contribution to the diet of residents in Fiji, with daily consumption of fresh fish in indigenous Fijian households estimated at 23.4 per cent.

“In 2013, per capita fish consumption was estimated at approximately 35.6 kg.

“Marine plastics can impact food security both directly through reduced fish stock, and by contaminating fish with macro- and microplastics.”

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