How are plastics harming the environment

ecosystem environment garbage patches lake pollution ocean pollution plastic polluting rubber pollution single use plastic

Plastic is ubiquitous

Plastic debris is found absolutely everywhere, from the Arctic to Antarctica. It clogs street drains in our cities; it litters campgrounds and national parks, and is even piling up on Mount Everest. But thanks to runoff, and to our fondness for directly dumping our trash into the nearest river or lake, plastic is growing increasingly common in the world’s oceans.

Mountains of plastic trash have been found everywhere in the world’s oceans, from one of the remotest specks of dirt on the planet, Henderson Island, a tiny uninhabited coral atoll in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, to the deepest spot on Earth, the Mariana Trench, which plummets to a depth of 10,994 meters (36,070 feet) below sea level. As that flotilla of escaped rubber duckies demonstrated, floating plastic even forms massive “garbage patches” swirling slowly in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, thousands of kilometers away from land.

But more than floating around in the water column, plastic trash is found in the guts of more than 90% of the world’s sea birds, in the stomachs of more than half of the world’s sea turtles, and it’s even choking the life out of whales. At the rate at which plastic is accumulating in the oceans of the planet, it’s predicted that, by 2050, the mass of plastic in the world’s oceans will exceed the mass of all the fish that live there.

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/grrlscientist/2018/04/23/five-ways-that-plastics-harm-the-environment-and-one-way-they-may-help/#25d9fbb367a0

Older Post Newer Post