PARIS: A secluded mountain region thought to be free of plastic pollution is in fact blanketed by airborne microplastics on a scale comparable to a major city such as Paris, alarmed researchers reported Monday.
Over a five-month period in 2017-2018, an average of 365 tiny bits of plastic settled every day on each square metre of an uninhabited, high-altitude area in the Pyrenees straddling France and Spain, they reported in the journal Nature Geoscience.
"It is astounding and worrying that so many particles were found in the Pyrenees field site," said lead author Steve Allen, a doctoral student at the University of Strathclyde in Scotland. The study focused on microplastics mostly between 10 and 150 micrometres across, including fragments, fibres and sheet-like pieces of film.
By comparison, a human hair is, on average, about 70 micrometres in width. "We would never have anticipated that this study would reveal such high levels of microplastic deposits," added co-author Gael Le Roux, a researcher at EcoLab in Toulouse, in southwestern France. Plastic litter has emerged in the last few years as a major environmental problem. Up to 12 million tonnes of plastics are thought to enter the world’s oceans every year, and millions more clog inland waterways and landfills.
His lawyers told a hearing in December that the decision to take this away subjected him to unlawful, unfair and...
South Korea also has the worst gender pay gap in the OECD, as Korean women bring home about two-thirds of the income...
He did not name the country involved, but said it had also targeted Australia’s defence industry
Washington has been trying to stem the flow of American personal data to China, part of a years-long struggle over...
Texas Governor Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration for 60 counties
Priti Patel is known for constantly running campaigns against Muslims and Islam