14 Million Tonnes of Microplastics On the Sea Floor

Microplastics in the ocean has gained awareness, but a new study shows the problem is far worse than previously understood.

An Australian study estimates that 14 million tonnes of microplastics pile up on the deep ocean floor every year


A study released by CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, warns that the accumulation of plastic debris, particularly microplastics, is as much as 25 times worse than previously thought.

“Our research found that the deep ocean is a sink for microplastics,” said lead research scientist Denise Hardesty in a Phsy.org article. “We were surprised to observe high microplastic loads in such a remote location.”

While awareness of the problem of ocean plastics has grown in recent years, this disturbing new discovery of the magnitude of plastics debris floating in huge gyres and settling to the seabed emphasizes the urgency of finding effective solutions.

“Government, industry and the community need to work together to significantly reduce the amount of litter we see along our beaches and in our oceans,” Hadley told Phys.org.

Image coourtesy of Phys.org