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seabirds covered in a toxic glue - petition

Over the last few days in Devon, Cornwall and Dorset, over a thousand stricken seabirds including guillemots, puffins and razorbills have been washed up on our shores, dead or dying. The culprit: a substance called Polyisobutene (PIB) which covers these precious seabirds in a toxic glue. [1]

Currently, it’s legal to dump PIB at sea. But a simple change to maritime law could change that and help prevent the scenes of destruction we’ve seen in areas like Whitsand Bay this week.

That won’t happen unless our transport secretary, Patrick McLoughlin MP, puts pressure on the International Maritime Organization (IMO). This international agency is responsible for our seas and oceans and has the power to make it illegal for ships to dump PIB. [2] If he’s confronted with the full strength of public opinion on this latest threat to our seabirds, he will feel forced to act.

Can you sign the petition to the transport secretary? Help pressure him to act now to save the South West seabirds. Please click here:

The longer we wait the higher the risk of more birds dying. Birds that come into contact with PIB eventually die of hunger or hypothermia as the sticky glue-like substance means they can’t eat or move properly.

This latest spill has been described as the worst ever. Nearly twenty species of birds have been washed up on beaches across Devon, Cornwall and Dorset. No one knows how many birds in total have been killed or injured.

There is already a long list of banned substances which ships can’t dump at sea. The transport secretary has the power to press for PIB to be added to that list. But he needs to know that the British public want him to act now, and do as much as he can to protect our precious birds.

Please sign the petition now:

Thanks for being involved,

Belinda, Maddy, Becky and the 38 Degrees team

PS: It’s not just 38 Degrees members who are stepping up to protect our seabirds. The RSPB and other conservation charities are also putting pressure on the transport secretary to take action without delay. [3] You can add your name to the petition here:

[1] BBC News England: RSPB says seabird deaths caused by 'worst PIB spill':
[2] Read more about the IMO here:
[3] RSPB to raise seabird pollution issue with Government: