科学家发现,漂浮在大西洋上的微塑料碎片总重量从1200万吨到2100万吨不等。由英国国家海洋学中心领导的一项研究,其中研究小组在穿越大西洋中部的探险中测量了海平面以下200米(650英尺)内的海水。

In the decades that our discarded plastic waste has been finding its way into the environment, much of it is broken down into tiny pieces too small for us to see. 
几十年来,我们丢弃的塑料垃圾进入了自然环境,其中许多已经被分解成肉眼不可见的微小碎片。

So, Dr Katsia Pabortsava, from the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, led an expedition to find all that missing microplastic – particles, smaller than the diameter of a human hair – floating in the Atlantic.
因此,来自英国南安普顿国家海洋中心的Katsia Pabortsava博士带领一支探险队找到了所有漂浮在大西洋中的微塑料碎片,这些碎片比人类头发的直径还小。

On that expedition from the UK to the Falklands, Katsia used what's essentially1 a large ocean-going sieve2 with a very fine mesh3 to drag through the top 200 metres of the sea at different locations. That revealed that up to 21 million tonnes of microplastic is floating in those upper layers of the ocean.
在这次从英国到福克兰群岛的探险中,卡齐娅使用了一个巨大的过滤网,这个过滤网本质上是适合海洋探险的。滤网的网眼很细,在不同的位置过滤了海平面以下200米以内的海水。结果显示,多达2100万吨的微塑料碎片漂浮在海洋上层。

The team only analysed their samples for the three most commonly used packaging plastics. So, they say their estimate is actually likely to be conservative.
该小组只分析了他们收集的样本中最常见的三种包装塑料。因此,他们说他们的估计数据实际上很可能是保守的。

But what these tonnes of microscopic4 fragments show is that decades of plastic pollution has been washed from rivers or even blown on the wind into the ocean.
但这些成吨的微小碎片表明,几十年的塑料污染已经从河流中被冲走,甚至被风吹进了海洋。


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