Feb 19, 2019 | Updated: 08:51 AM EST

Plastic Wastes In Arctic Seas Threaten Local Wildlife

Apr 20, 2017 04:50 AM EDT


Pollution has been a serious environmental issue throughout the years and has proven to produce grave damage to the world and its inhabitants. The latest among the long list of bad effects of pollution hits the local wildlife of the Arctic seas as plastic wastes from the North Atlantic wretchedly built up in the region.

Based on the study recently published in the Science Advances, there is an alarming amount of pollution in the Arctic seas as large fractions of plastic wastes were found in the seas of Greenland and Barents, which can seriously harm local wildlife in the region. According to the research, there are now almost 300 billion fragments accumulated in both seas.

Sadly, the main source of these plastic wastes was coming from both sides of North Atlantic produced by the existing plastic pollution mainly in US and Europe, the research suggested. Based on the analysis, a phenomenon called "Thermohaline Circulation" is responsible for bringing these wastes in Arctic seas. This is a type of current, also known as "the global ocean conveyer belt," that prevents plastic wastes from washing back onto the shore but prompts fragments to sink and drift to the Barents and Greenland ocean floors.

The Arctic region is known to have a small population but this considerable amount of plastic waste pollution spells doom to the region and most especially to its local wildlife. Scientists stressed the importance of proper waste management and warned people about the unpredictability of the destination of plastic wastes people throwing in different bodies of water.

Plastic wastes found in the Arctic seas consist of fishing lines, plastic films, fragments and granules, which contribute for less than 3% of the total global pollution, an amount that may be small in number but can be very harmful once it keeps piling up in the next years. Marine organisms in the region may by mistake eat these plastics, which can poison and kill them.

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