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There may be at least 2.5 times more microplastic in the ocean than we thought

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We have underestimated the amount of microplastic in the ocean, by a factor of 2.5 at least. Many of the smallest pieces are thin fibres, not hard chunks.

Millions of tonnes of plastic waste enter the ocean every year, mostly as tiny fragments, known as microplastic, which are invisible to the naked eye.

“When we started looking for microplastic in the sea, people used traditional plankton nets,” says Penelope Lindeque at Plymouth Marine Laboratory in the UK. These have holes about 333 …



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