Unlike plastic bottles, which float, wet wipes are heavy and sink to the bottom of the river. It is thought that Londoners are guilty of flushing the wipes down their toilets, unaware that the products are not biodegradable. When the city’s Victorian sewerage system overflows (on average once a week), huge numbers of wipes make their way into the Thames, endangering its wildlife. A recent study found that more than seven in ten Thames flounder (it’s a fish) had plastic in their stomachs.
Thames21 Chief Executive Debbie Leach said: ‘These figures reveal the shocking extent to which wet wipes are wrecking the Thames riverbed. It’s crucial that people bin their wet wipes, not flush them.’ In other dirty findings, tube passengers are exposed to ‘eight times more pollution than motorists’. And here’s an app that shows you the least polluted routes through London.