Mersey has the highest level of microplastic pollution of any river in the world

Mail Online | 5/19/2020 | Colin Fernandez Environment Correspondent For The Daily Mail;Dianne Apen-sadler For Mailonline
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The Mersey has more plastic floating in it than the infamous 'great Pacific garbage patch' and every river contains microplastic, research has found.

Liverpool's famous river was one of 13 nationwide tested by environmental group Greenpeace - nearly all of which had high levels of microplastic junk.

Mersey - Miles - Stockport - Cheshire - Number

But the Mersey, which runs for 70 miles from Stockport, Cheshire, had the highest number, with a shocking 875 pieces of microplastic found in half an hour of sampling its waters.

The most polluted section of the Mersey is downstream from a plastics factory, experts note.

Greenpeace - Government - 'bold - Plastic - Reduction

Greenpeace is calling for the Government to introduce 'bold' new plastic reduction targets and create an independent watchdog with powers to enforce them.

Scientists and campaigners sampled 30 points along the rivers Exe, Thames, Severn, Great Ouse, Trent, Mersey, Aire, Derwent, Wear, Conwy, Wye, Clyde and Lagan.

Analysis - Samples - Greenpeace - Scientists - University

Analysis of the samples by Greenpeace scientists at the University of Exeter using an infrared detector found microplastics were in 28 out of 30 locations tested.

A total of 1,271 pieces of plastic ranging from fragments of straws and bottle tops to tiny microbeads less than 1mm across in size were caught in a specially designed net by the survey team.

Pieces - Mersey - Waterway - Time - Pacific

The pieces in the Mersey makes the waterway, at the time it was sampled, proportionally more polluted than the great Pacific garbage patch, considered by scientists to be one of the most plastic-polluted expanses of water on Earth, Greenpeace said.

The environmental campaign group said the amount of plastic they found in their sample would amount to 2million pieces of microplastic per square kilometre.

Survey - North - Pacific - Gyre - Pieces

That is double that of a 2014 survey of the North Pacific Gyre, which had 1million pieces of microplastic per square kilometre.

The research also found that microbeads, tiny spherical pieces of plastic often used in cosmetic and household products, were found in five rivers despite...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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