Microplastics: New Killer Agent of Earth

Plastics have now taken over the world we live in, including the ice floating in the Arctic. This is a sign that plastic is spreading all over from the hot deserts to the busy cities to even the cold unreachable Arctic.

Microplastics: New Killer Agent of Earth
Microplastics Floating on Oceans Surface a New Killer Agent of Earth

The increase is two to three times higher than the previous record. These plastics on ice will eventually be given back to the water when global warming leads to ice melting.  This will eventually lead to wildlife being killed due to the constraints of plastic.

“As climate change will accelerate sea ice melting, more microplastics will be released from the sea ice and will enter the marine environment,” said Dr. Pennie Lindeque, plastics scientist at Plymouth Marine Laboratory.

Microplastic is from various sources, for example microbeads is a tiny piece of manufactured polyethylene plastic that is added into health and beauty products such as cleansers and toothpastes.

This is a sign of polluting the seas with garbage filled with unnecessary objects such as plastics and even from fishing.

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Ilka Peeken of the Alfred Wgener Institute, Helmholtz Center for Polar and Marine Research in Bremerhaven, Germany said-

“No one can say for certain how harmful these tiny plastic particles are for marine life, or ultimately also for human beings.”

Due to circulation patterns, plastics mostly from Europe will end up in the ice in the Arctic Ocean. Therefore what needs to studied is the circulation of water going on and forth to the Arctic.

As of now eight million tons per year of plastic move from land to the ocean , and eventually into the Arctic and deep ocean.

A United Nations agreement has called on specific goals to tackle the plastic waste in the ocean. However this has been rejected by many large countries such as China, India and even the United States. How will plastic waste in the oceans stop when many countries are refusing agreements that have been called upon.

The UN resolution is trying to tackle the plastic waste by stepping up actions and encouraging members to prioritize certain policies.

China is the biggest producer of plastic waste with almost nine million tones being mismanaged in 2010.