By Laura Wirth September 17, 2018 09:10:03When it comes for the oceans, there are no limits to the amount of plastic that we can consume, says a study from the US Geological Survey.
It is an estimate based on data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which includes information on plastics used in fishing gear and in the manufacture of products, such as food, plastics and biofuels.
The report found that, over the past 10 years, the amount plastic in the oceans has increased by approximately 2,400 percent, the most dramatic increase in the past 20 years.
The report said that plastic pollution has been a global concern for the last 40 years.
The number of plastic species in the ocean has tripled since 1970, when the first estimate was made.
It has continued to increase since then, the report said, adding that the number of species of plastic in seas has grown by more than 100 percent over the last 30 years.
“The oceans are now one of the most vulnerable ecosystems on the planet,” said Michael Pollack, lead author of the report.
“It is estimated that plastic is the single biggest contributor to the warming of the oceans.”
The report, which has been published online, is based on more than 300,000 observations from the NOAA Fisheries Research Laboratory, which is funded by the National Science Foundation.
It found that about 20 percent of the plastic species found in oceans is plastic that is not food or non-biodegradable.
The rest of the plastics are mostly marine debris and can be harmful to marine life.
Researchers estimate that about 85 percent of all the plastic debris in the sea is from fishing gear.
They estimate that fishing gear in the US has a global impact of $5 trillion.
About 5 percent of plastic debris is marine debris that could be harmful for marine life, according to the study.
“This research highlights the need for a global effort to tackle the plastics problem by improving the availability and quality of plastics for use in consumer goods,” said the study’s lead author, Michael Pollaczewski, a graduate student in oceanography and environmental science at Rutgers University.
“Consumers need to know what is in their food, what their clothes are made of, and how much plastic is in the water they are drinking.”
Researchers are currently working on an environmental impact assessment to identify areas where plastics are impacting marine life and other coastal ecosystems.