Nanoplastics are polluting the Arctic and Antarctic
Nanoplastics have been discovered at the North and South poles by a team of scientists.
These tiny particles, which are 1-1,000 nanometres in size, are created when plastic breaks down and during the production of plastic goods.
They found several types of nanoplastic at the North and South poles, but more than half of them were polyethylene, which is used to make plastic bags, toys and bottles. More nanoplastics were found in the Antarctic than at the Arctic.
The report was carried out by scientists at Utrecht University in the Netherlands, the Université Libre de Bruxelles and University of Copenhagen. The team said that whilst they knew nanoplastics could travel across the oceans, they were surprised to find so many of them.
Lead author of the study Dušan Materić said: “Now we know that nanoplastics are transported to these corners of the Earth in these quantities. This indicates that nanoplastics is really a bigger pollution problem than we thought.”
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