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Plastic waste found in Mariana Trench

May 16, 2019 00:00:00

For three weeks from April till May of this year, Victor Vescovo, a retired US naval officer, descended his deep ocean submersible four times nearly 11 kilometres (10,928 metres) to a point in the Pacific Ocean's Mariana Trench. The Trench is called the deepest place on Earth. On one occasion, he spent nearly four hours on the floor of the trench.

Besides the sea creatures that live in the Trench, he found something there that disappointed him: garbage. He found angular metal or plastic objects, a plastic bag and candy wrappers, in those depths. He later told some media outlets, "It was very disappointing to see obvious human contamination of the deepest point in the ocean". He hoped that his discovery of rubbish in the Mariana Trench would raise awareness against dumping of plastic products and other waste in the oceans. It should also pressure governments to better enforce existing regulations or implement new ones. According to the United Nations, plastic waste has reached epidemic proportions in the world's oceans with an estimated 100 million tonnes dumped there to date. Plastic waste products are not only affecting the water bodies, it is also harmful for aquatic animals and plant life. In recent years, scientists have found large amounts of micro-plastic in the guts of deep-dwelling ocean mammals like whales.

Each government should take measures based on the pollution in their water-bodies including seas and rivers. Only through such initiatives can this crisis be resolved.

Akibul Javed,

Indira Road, Dhaka

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