FOUNDATION TARA OCEAN – 23 November 2019
Where does plastic waste originate? How does it arrive in the Ocean? Where should we concentrate our efforts to stop the flow of this waste? What impacts do plastics have on marine biodiversity?
Recent estimates find that 80% of plastic waste found at sea originates on land. The Tara Ocean Foundation and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) have been involved in this research since 2010. Now it is urgent to explore and identify the flux of plastic waste from land to sea in order to stop it. The upcoming Mission Microplastics 2019 — with the CNRS in charge of scientific coordination — took the schooner Tara through several regions in Europe for 6 months, exploring 9 major European rivers.
Mission microplastics, 2019
During several expeditions since 2010, the schooner collected microplastics (from 0.2 to < 5mm in diameter) in her nets. The evidence is clear: microplastics are ubiquitous throughout the oceans. In 2014 we focused on this pollution in the Mediterranean Sea. Then in 2017 we discovered an important zone of plastic accumulation in the Arctic Ocean, and in 2018 we identified the biodiversity associated with microplastics in the north Pacific vortex. Tara and her partners identify the sources, predict their outcome, and assess the impact of plastics from the land to the sea.
By supporting the Tara Ocean Foundation, you are advancing research and enabling us to understand the impact of microplastics on the Ocean in order to find solutions on land and fight together against this global pollution.
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