Most of the world's population lives on or near the coasts. Every nation not completely landlocked has used the sea as its supposedly self-cleansing garbage dump. Now the effects are being felt. There is not a coast in the world which is not dangerously polluted. Sewage, oil, plastics, industrial effluents, radioactive waste have been added to ungoverned development, all of which are busily destroying otherwise robust inshore eco-systems.
Hinrichsen, basing his work on United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) research and his own extensive travels, has described the situation in the Mediterranean, the Gulf, the Indian Ocean, the South-East Asian Seas and the Eastern Pacific. He covers both the disasters and the growing successes in dealing with them, and he points the way to the sort of international deal needed to rescue a vast resource in danger of complete destruction. His book is both a call to action and a sign of hope. Originally published in 1990