Microplastics Have Invaded Some Of The Planet’s Most Remote Places

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

May 7, 2019

A key reason plastic trash is so damaging to the environment is that it doesn’t disappear ― it breaks into small pieces called microplastics that can linger for decades or more and can travel on the air, in water, and inside living creatures.

Scientists around the world now issue frequent warnings that these plastic particles are nearly everywhere. They’ve been found on the planet’s highest peaks and in the lowest trenches.

The United Nations Environment Program estimated in 2014 that the scourge of plastics in our seas causes at least $13 billion in damage annually to marine ecosystems (at the time, the UNEP said that figure was likely a “significant underestimate”).

Scientists have also speculated the problem will soon be so widespread that the material will wind up in the geological record.

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