An 'Island' of Disgusting Wet Wipes Changed The Course of The Thames River in London

According to The Times of London, a "wet wipe island" the size of two tennis fields has developed in the Thames, causing the river to alter direction as it passes through London.

Ministers have advised people to cease using wet wipes, and the government is contemplating banning plastic-containing wipes.

Labour MP Fleur Anderson cautioned that when wet wipes are flushed down the drain, they do not decompose and end up in the Thames, England's second-longest river.

"There's an island the size of two tennis courts, and I've been and stood on it – it's near Hammersmith Bridge in the Thames, and it's a meter deep or more in places of just wet wipes. It's actually changed the course of the Thames," according to The Times, Anderson addressed the Commons during a session of questions on the environment, food, and rural affairs.

Anderson has suggested a ban on the manufacturing and sale of plastic-containing wet wipes, according to The Times, but it is unlikely to become legislation without government support.

According to the environmental NGO Thames21, most wet wipes are composed of plastic, which does not degrade when flushed.

Furthermore, they can degrade into microplastic and harm aquatic life and the Thames' environment, according to the organization.

The organization is pressing the government to prohibit the use of plastic-containing wet wipes and to require explicit labeling of how wet wipes should be disposed of.

Thames21 tracks the plastic garbage that washes up on river foreshores and discovered that in just under five years, one mound expanded by 1.4 meters (about 55 inches) and spanned the size of two tennis courts, according to Tideway and the PLA statistics.

At these hotspots, wet wipes were detected in concentrations ranging from 50 to 200 per square meter.

Last year, the charity's volunteers gathered nearly 27,000 wipes in two days at a separate location near Battersea Bridge.

Wet wipes also account for approximately 90% of the components in "fatbergs", which are solid waste heaps consisting of grease and fat that can clog sewers.

According to the article, Rebecca Pow, an environmental minister, has warned the people not to flush wipes down the drain if they use them.

Pow stated that the government will "come up with some suggestions of what we propose to do very shortly."

This article was originally published by Business Insider.