Plastic Pollution Discovered in Marianas Trench, the Deepest Spot on EarthMarie Donlon | December 21, 2018
According to recently published research from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, countless microplastics have been discovered in the Marianas Trench, the deepest point of the ocean.
The trench is 36,070 ft deep and is located east of the Philippines and China. Researchers are suggesting that it might be “one of the largest sinks for microplastic debris on Earth." It is home to some marine life despite temperatures between 1° C and 4° C and pressures of 16,000 psi
Researchers discovered that the deeper below sea level, the more plastic they discovered, reaching a peak of 13.51 pieces per liter. Plastic also managed to burrow between 7 and 11 km into the sediment. Among ocean waves and currents, plastic breaks down into smaller fragments, making it even more challenging to capture.
Researchers hypothesize that the plastic is coming from a variety of sources, including the notorious Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is a massive, ocean-floating trash field, as well as from industrialized zones in the northwest Pacific.
With each day comes more information about ocean plastic pollution levels and its impact on sea life and, subsequently, humans. It was discovered last year that man-made fibers were found in crustaceans and other sea life that reside in ocean trenches.
The research is published in the journal Geochemical Perspectives Letters