More than 1000 rivers account for 80% of global riverine plastic emissions into the ocean

Meijer, L.J.J. et al, Science Advances Plastics & Pollution

More than 1000 rivers account for 80% of global riverine plastic emissions into the ocean
Abhyuday Majhi on Unsplash

Our model approach includes geographically distributed data on plastic waste, land use, wind, precipitation, and rivers and calculates the probability for plastic waste to reach a river and subsequently the ocean. This probabilistic approach highlights regions that are likely to emit plastic into the ocean. We calibrated our model using recent field observations and show that emissions are distributed over more rivers than previously thought by up to two orders of magnitude.

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