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Pollution

What happened to all the plastic we released into the oceans?

21 May 2020 James Dacey

Plastics in our oceans have something in common with dark matter in the universe. Our models tell us there should be loads of it out there, but it’s proving difficult to track it down. The big difference with marine plastic, however, it that whenever we do look for it we tend to find it – and the effect on marine wildlife can be devastating. The challenge for scientists is surveying and modelling the vast world oceans to figure out precisely where the majority of this plastic pollution is ending up.

To find out more, read ‘The search for the missing plastic‘, a feature originally published in the May 2020 issue of Physics World – a special edition on plastic waste.

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