There is no place safe from contamination of microplastics, this is what scientists reveal when small plastic fibers were found near the summit of Mount Everest, the highest point on Earth, where plastic particles were discovered at an altitude of more than 8,000 meters (26,000 feet) above the highest mountain In the world it is called the “death zone”, where oxygen is not sufficient to sustain a person’s life.
According to the British newspaper “Daily Mail”, scientists have obtained evidence of particles in the mountain and in the valley below, and they believe it comes from outer clothing made of polyester, acrylic and nylon.
But microplastics may have floated to the summit of Mount Everest on air currents. Microplastics are tiny particles less than five millimeters (0.2 in) long, and the health effect of these particles remains an alarming mystery.
University of Plymouth researchers took 19 high-altitude samples from Mount Everest and surrounding areas, and at the summit of Mount Everest, at 8,440 meters above sea level, scientists found 12 micro-plastic fibers per liter of snow.
Professor Richard Thompson OBE FRS, Head of the International Marine Litter Research Unit, said: “Since the 1950s, plastics have been increasingly used in all types of products due to their operations, creating the global environmental crisis we are witnessing today.”
There is now global recognition of the need to take action, as Nepal itself is imposing regulations on climbing tours in an effort to curb the environmental problems caused by waste.
While this study, published in the journal One Earth, is the first time that microplastics have been found near the summit of Everest, microplastics have previously been found in Antarctica, the Arctic, the Atlantic Ocean and the Alps.
Previous research by the University of Exeter and the University of Queensland found that microplastics are ubiquitous in the world’s oceans, and plastic was found in sardines to be the most affected, and the largest amount of plastic was eaten, up to 30 mg per serving, which is the same weight as a grain of rice.
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