Ghost nets are abandoned fishing nets that become a danger to sea creatures because they fish infinitely further. For decades, these nets, some of which are miles long, continue to catch and thus become a death trap for fish and other marine animals.
Since they are no longer made from easily perishable natural substances, but from synthetics, they only rot after 400 to 600 years and thus contribute to the plastic pollution of our oceans. It is estimated that more than one million tons of plastic waste in the sea comes from fishing.
Especially in the case of illegal fishing, when fishermen see the danger of being caught, they leave their nets in the water.
According to EU law, the disposal of fishing gear in the sea is prohibited, lost nets must be reported to the respective state in order to be recovered.
But: There is no government registration or a working salvage system. A study mentions that 25,000 nets are “lost” every year only in the oceans around Europe.
Hard to believe: If you tie all the ghost nets together, you can stretch them around the earth 33 times.