Polystyrene, a common ocean pollutant, decomposes in sunlight much faster than thought, a new study finds.

A major component of ocean pollution is less devastating and more manageable than usually portrayed, according to a scientific team at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Previous studies, including one last year by the United Nations Environment Program, have estimated that polystyrene, an ubiquitous plastic found in trash, could take thousands of years to degrade, making it nearly eternal. But in a new paper, five scientists found that sunlight can degrade polystyrene in centuries

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