What is entanglement?
Entanglement is entrapment of an animal by carelessly discarded litter.
Hi-Cone has taken positive action to respond to concern about animal entanglement.
All recyclable six-pack rings have been made of photodegradable LDPE (#4) plastic since 1989. This means that is if ring carriers are carelessly discarded, they will photodegrade or break apart when exposed to UV rays. Shortly after Hi-Cone carriers are exposed to the sun's UV rays, they begin to lose "structural integrity," and "elongation" decreases as they degrade. The carrier loses approximately 75% of its structural integrity in a matter of days. Continued exposure will cause maximum embrittlement in a matter of weeks. At this point, it will break apart when disturbed by wind, rain or other forces occurring naturally in the environment, allowing an entangled animal to tear and break away from the degraded carrier.
All ring carriers sold in the U.S. must be degradable per EPA Regulation*. Various state laws also require that the carriers be marked with a small diamond symbol to indicate photodegradability. All Hi-Cone carriers have been manufactured to photodegradable standards for more then 20 years. So check for the Diamond symbol as shown on the right on multipacks and you can be sure that they are photodegradable. The diamond symbol indicates the the plastic is photodegradable and in compliance with federal regulation.
*Click here to read more on Public Law 100-556, Degradable Plastic Ring Carriers Law and Federal Law 40 C.F.R. Part 238.
What are the real facts about entanglement?
Perception: One picture of an entangled animal represents thousands.
Reality: Entanglement has occurred, but how often is not entirely clear.
What percentage of entanglements involve six-pack rings and how many animals were entangled?
Over the past 25 years, 1 entangled animal has been found for every 1,998 miles shoreline and waterways. You could hike to New Orleans from Chicago and back again and you may find one animal entrapped. It most likely would be alive.
International Coastal Cleanup, conducted by the Ocean Conservancy, generates the only empirical database on debris in the ocean and waterways and has acquired a substantial amount of statistics and data on debris and animal entanglements. The 2011 information from the Ocean Conservancy International Coastal Cleanup shows entanglements from 6-pack carriers to be less than 1% of the total entanglements, reporting a total of 6 animals entangled.
To view the 2011 Marine Debris Report from the Ocean Conservancy click here.
To view the 2012 Marine Debris Report from the Ocean Conservancy click here.