Home News The plastic in our ocean is set to triple
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The plastic in our ocean is set to triple

The plastic in our ocean is set to triple
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The level of plastic in our oceans is set to triple in the next ten years, posing a substantial risk to aquatic life and placing a strain on the environment.

Plastic is not the only risk facing our world’s seas, other risks range from excessive plastic through to rising sea levels and pollution.

The ocean also faces the risk of runoff pesticides and fertilisers from farms, toxins, and human waste.

These concerns come in light of recent news detailing the presence of a huge floating island made entirely of plastic waste in the Pacific Ocean.

It has now been reported that the floating plastic is twice the size of France, four times bigger than scientists originally estimated it to be.

The island, which is known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch’, contains around 1.8 trillion pieces of plastic.

That’s the equivalent in weight of 500 jumbo jets!

Scientists, who predicted the plastic to consist of small pieces, and for the island to be much smaller in weight and size, are now aware that the island is much bigger than was previously believed.

The level of plastic pollution has grown considerably since the 1970s with scientists predicting that if little is done to stop the plastic spread, there will soon be more plastic than fish in our oceans.

Boyan Slat, the founder of ‘Ocean Cleanup’, has commented that the time is now to start with extensive plastic cleanups all across the world.

With 2.4 million tonnes of plastic entering the oceans each year, it is understandable that many scientists now believe the situation to be at breaking point.

Plastic poses a serious threat to sea life.

Many fish can get caught up in the plastic or risk ingesting toxins from the materials.

Steps have already been taken to reduce the level of plastic produced. In the UK, supermarkets now charge 5p for bags, whilst many establishments are replacing plastic straws with paper or charging extra to have them in your drink.

However, plastic is still a key component of our daily lives, from food packaging through to everyday appliances.

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Elizabeth Whittingham Elizabeth is a third year history student studying at The University of Manchester.