Plastic, A Danger for our Oceans
by louismekhael on September 8, 2017 - 3:24pm
A research was made by Danielle Green, a fellow in the Biochemistry Research Group at Trinity College in Ireland, on the impacts of plastic bags on the marine life. Her main questioning was about whether basic plastic bags or biodegradable plastic bags had the same effect on the oceans. After nine weeks of experiments, she found out that plastic bags diminished the quantity of microalgae by blocking the access to sunlight, oxygen and nutrients. Since the bottom of the food chain is not developing like it should, the rest of the chain has less food to grow so the quantity of each species reduces. So, even if we use biodegradable plastic bags, the consequences will almost be the same since it can’t decompose fast enough to change the major problem. Furthermore, even if the plastic bags completely decompose, microplastics will still be in the water and the organisms that consumes them will still be affected. If we look back at the statistics, we see that 1,500,000 tons of plastic were produced annually in the 1950s and today we produce almost 300,000,000 tons a year, which is a major increase. 40% of this quantity of plastic is single use packaging and a big portion of it ends up in marine environments. In consequence, 80% of the litter in these habitats is consisted by plastic. So, we should definitely reduce our consumption of plastic for the best of our marine life.