Plastic debris has been accumulating in bodies of water around the world for decades, impacting wildlife, commerce, and the entire ecosystem. As part of a newly-funded research effort, a team of Rochester Institute of Technology researchers will study how microplastics are affecting Lake Ontario.
Vehicle tyres have been confirmed as a leading source of microplastic pollution in the ocean and rivers, according to scientists.
Hundreds of thousands of tonnes of mismanaged waste could be blowing ashore on the ocean breeze every year, according to scientists who have discovered microplastics in sea spray.
Scientists have discovered microplastic hotspots on the ocean floor, formed by deep-sea currents that act as conveyor belts moving tiny plastic fragments around.
The most common microplastic found in the ocean is microfibers from textiles, which enters the ocean through domestic and industrial waste water.
A new study illustrates how optical satellite imagery from the European Space Agency can be used to identify aggregates of floating plastic, such as bottles, bags and fishing nets, in coastal waters.
Much like weather on land, ocean currents are a morass of complex, interconnected systems, affected by local physical features. This makes it difficult to understand where plastics might end up.
Researchers at University of Tasmania find 14 different kinds of plastic smaller than 5mm in an ice core from 2009.
Stephanie Wright of King's College London discusses what's known about microplastics and how much more there is to learn.
Companies and governments are working to minimize environmental harm of plastic packaging and products, but they face a nuanced reality.