May 13, 2019

Plastic bag found in deepest part of the ocean

Among the pink snailfish and prawn-like crustaceans Victor Vescovo encountered as he broke the record for the world's deepest dive, he also saw something a bit more alarming: a plastic bag.

Driving the news: Vescovo dove nearly 7 miles into the Pacific Ocean's Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the ocean, BBC reports.

The big picture: In the past decade, plastic has begun to be detected in some of the most remote spots of the ocean, among marine creatures — and even in the air.

  • Last year, a study of old footage identified a plastic bag lying 35,756 feet into the Mariana Trench, per HuffPost.
  • Sailors found a considerable amount of microplastics in water samples at Point Nemo, the most remote spot in the world's oceans.
    • Microplastics can take thousands of years to degrade and can cause health problems for marine life if ingested.

Go deeper: Plastics are "potentially everywhere"

Go deeper