Dr Wallace J Nichols, a research associate at the California Academy of Sciences, told Al Jazeera he finds plastic on every beach he visits across the globe, and added, "Probably every sea turtle on the planet interacts with plastic at some point in its life."
According to the Association Terranostra, Costa Rica alone produces 4,500 metric tonnes of garbage every day that ends up on beaches and in the ocean [Reuters]
Jo Royle, a trans-ocean skipper and ocean advocate, has seen the same.
"For 13 years I've been crossing oceans," she told Al Jazeera. "I've seen plastic on the coastline of Antarctica, and over the years we've noticed plastic becoming more of an issue on remote islands. Over the last seven years we've seen it increase dramatically. I can't remember the last time I've been on a beach and not seen plastic."
Biological oceanographer Dr Debora Iglesias-Rodriguez, with the National Oceanography Centre at Britain's University of Southampton, is also concerned.
"Marine pollution is a big issue," she told Al Jazeera. "There is this idea that oceans have unlimited inertia, but nano-particles of plastic getting into marine animals and the food chain are affecting fish fertility rates, and this affects food security and coastal populations. Pollution is having a huge impact on the oceans, and is urgent and needs to be dealt with."