A recent research has found the world’s highest microplastic pollution in a river near Manchester, UK. The research also concluded that the 2015-16 floods in the area released more than 40 billion pieces of microplastic into the sea.
The surge of such a vast amount of microplastic from one small river catchment in a single event led the scientists to conclude that the current estimate for the number of particles in the ocean – five trillion – is a major underestimate.
Microplastics include broken-down plastic waste, synthetic fibres and beads found in personal hygiene products. They are known to harm marine life, which mistake them for food, and can be consumed by humans too via seafood and drinking water.