New research shows that each year as much as 20 million tons of plastic end up in seas and over 100,000 animals die from the harmful effect of plastic and trash in oceans.
This was the main reason why Norwegian company Nofir AS decided to spread activity around European coastline. In spring 2016 the company started action in Malta focused on collecting and recycling discarded fishing equipment, which is a big problem in this country. The company has already collected more than 8,000 kg of fishing nets on this area.
More and more fishermen in Malta complain about disposal of old fishing equipment, which is difficult to get rid of. First of all, it is hard to find a place to store large amounts of useless fishing gear as owners of landfills very often refuse to take this kind of waste. Nofir tries to prevent the throwing away of nets into the oceans by taking useless fishing material from fishing industry.
Nofir want to cooperate with Maltese fishermen and ensure that as few nets as possible end up in the sea. The activity in Malta includes looking for companies, fishermen or fish farmers who want to get rid of material. The company will take care of transport and deliver all documents, which are needed. Collected fishing nets in most cases will be dismantled and given for recycling.
Large amounts of fishing equipment lost at sea or abandoned are hurting the marine environment. Ghost nets have continuously catches fish, birds and marine mammals for many years at the seabed causing degradation of marine life. The world’s oceans may have more plastic debris than fish by the year 2050, according to a report produced by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
Nofir CEO Øistein Aleksandersen said: “We we would like to encourage Maltese people to contact us if they want to get rid of useless nets. Nofir AS has collected discarded equipment from fishing and fish farming around Europe for many years. Fishing nets mostly consist of plastic so it is a perfect subject for recycling – that’s why almost all of Nofir material is sent to the recycling factory. In this way we not only prevent fishing nets from going to the seas but also create new, valuable products like clothes, furniture and carpets.”