17 Jul 2018

If kelp can reach Antarctica, so can plastic

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm, 1:16 pm on 17 July 2018

Antarctica is pretty far away from other ecosystems. It seems largely untouched by human impact.

But new research has found it's nowhere near as isolated as once thought. Kelp drifted 20,000 kilometres to reach the continent, the longest biological rafting trip ever recorded. 

That means Antarctica could soon become a dumping ground for the plastic that pollutes our oceans. On the other hand, it could also mean a new home for species to colonise. 

To explain all this for us is one of the scientists involved in the research, Professor Jon Waters from the University of Otago's Zoology department.

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Photo: Supplied

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