The Maldives, one of the top honeymoon destinations in the Indian Ocean, is famous for its pristine beaches, beautiful turquoise waters and top class resorts.
But what many tourists are not aware of is the fact that these dream holiday islands dump around 300 to 400 tonnes of rubbish a day on an artificial island called Thilafushi. This island is situated approximately 7 kilometres from Malé, the capital of the Maldives and is used for the sole purpose of disposing rubbish, such as plastic pollution waste.
A plastic pollution problem reaching apocalyptic levels
Since 1992 the Maldives have been dumping their trash on Thalifushi, also known as Trash Island, but nowadays the plastic pollution literally extends this island of waste.
This past summer Allison Teal visited Thalifushi, to expose the serious water pollution problem that is affecting the Maldives. Together with documentary photographer Mark Tipple and his colleague Sarah Lee, Teal documented the harmful effects of sea pollution on Thalifushi and areas in close proximity to “Trash Island”.
During her stay, Teal did not only raise awareness about plastic pollution, but she also participated in a beach clean-up with a group of volunteers as well as the local community.
With these “Trash Island” photos below, Teal is showing people the magnitude of the Maldives’ water pollution problem and the importance of plastic recycling. These images speak for themselves: