Fish exposed to Microplastics pollution since 1950s
Scientific India|November - December 2021
Plastics is an avoidable thing for modern Pcivilization, it is impossible to picture a future without it. Plastics are ubiquitous and it is included in food packaging, automobiles, clothes, fishing gear, and medical devices. Plastics are highly used because of its features such as lightness, strength, durability, and low cost, among other alternatives. Plastics benefits are overshadowed by their drawbacks, such as their strong resistance to deterioration and the real fact that they get accumulate in nature due to poor management of waste in many parts of the world. This can be particularly noticeable on beaches and in oceans, where currents and wind carry plastic trash.
Monikandon Sukumaran* Kesavan Devarayan and Ramar Marimuthu

Plastics and microplastics

According to Eriksen et al. 2014 there are around 5 trillion plastic bits of all sizes floating in the oceans, which weighs about 250,000 tonnes. Growing awareness of plastic pollution of ocean has led to better plastic waste management, prohibitions were imposed by several nations on the use of microplastics in cosmetics, and in the use of disposable plastic products like shopping bags, cutlery etc. Plastics which are smaller than 5 mm are classified as Microplastics. Microplastics are usually divided into two categories according to the source namely primary and secondary. Microplastics are released into the environment either accidently or through wastewater. Pellets used in the production of bigger plastic goods, as well as microbeads used in cosmetics and industrial processes are the principal sources. Plastic fragmentation, weathering of plastic debris on shorelines, sea, and UV induced brittleness of plastics are the secondary sources of microplastics.

Microplastics in Fishes and Bivalves

Rochman and his team conducted a study on the 76 whole fish which includes 11 species purchased from Indonesian fish market and they discovered that gastrointestinal track of these species contains about 28 percentage of plastic waste. The same team has evaluated the 64 whole fish which includes 12 species purchased from California and they identified that 25 percent microplastics are available in the gut of these species.

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