Algae in Arctic polluted with microplastics

Algae in Arctic polluted with microplastics

August 01, 2023

Melosira arctica is food for benthic animals and plankton.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. Scientists at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research found that the Arctic algae Melosira arctica contains ten times more microplastic particles than the surrounding water. This poses a threat to benthic animals and the plankton that feed on them.

The results of the study are reported by Scientific Russia with reference to a publication in the Environmental Science and Technology journal. Algae grow under sea ice, and when they die, they stick together and form lumps that can sink several thousand meters to the sea bottom. There they nourish bottom animals and bacteria. The analysis showed that Melosira arctica accumulations contain an average of 31 000 microplastic particles per cubic meter – ten times more than sea water.

Polyethylene, polyester, polypropylene, nylon, acrylic and other types of plastic are found in the Arctic. Due to chemicals and dyes, they cause great harm to the environment and living beings.

Recall that Russia will gradually abandon plastic packaging.

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Text: Angelica Stepanova, Photo: Nikolay Shchipko

August 01, 2023

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