Scientists have just offered another grim comparison to the amount of plastic that humans could be unknowingly ingesting: the equivalent of a credit card, each week.

Herald science reporter Jamie Morton looks at five of the most alarming figures that have come out of recent research into the global scourge that is marine plastic pollution.

2000

Take your bank card out of your wallet and imagine putting that inside you, each week.

A new report suggests that people are consuming about 2000 tiny pieces of plastic every week – that's equal to 21 grams a month, just over 250 grams a year, and five grams, or the weight of an Eftpos card.

Based on analysis from Australia's University of Newcastle, the WWF-commissioned report drew on data from more than 50 studies on the ingestion of microplastics by people.

The research found the single largest source of plastic ingestion was through water, both bottled and tap,

Advertisement
Advertisement

100 million

8 million

300

50