Sarah-Jeanne Royer set out to measure methane gas coming from biological activity in sea water. She found that plastic we use worldwide & stuff used to make plastic bags was a major reason behind the emission of warming gases!
Researchers also claimed that plastic found in the water emit greenhouse gases methane and ethylene when they break down.
“It was a totally unexpected discovery”, Dr Royer told BBC News.
Source: BBC news
Dr Sarah-Jeanne Royer “holding microplastics at Kamilo Point on the Big Island. “ –HawaiiNewsNow
Additionally, the research found that “after 212 days in the sun, this plastic emitted 176 times more methane than at the start of the experiment”
Mass production of plastics started nearly 70 years ago, and the production rate is expected to double over the next two decades, according to a UH news release.
This discovery brings about a scary new angle to plastic pollution. Up until now, the link between plastic and climate change was focused on the production of global warming gasses during production using fossil fuels. It was also known that plastics degrade and release CO2. This is the first indication that plastic is far worse and adds immense amounts of global warming gasses.