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Supporting Research Into the Extent of Microplastics

Microplastics are one of the most critical problems facing our oceans. Run by UK charity, Just One Ocean, in collaboration with the University of Portsmouth, The Big Microplastic Survey is a global citizen science project where volunteers take samples to provide information about the extent and location of microplastics around the world.

After conducting their first microplastic survey in March 2018, they realised the work being undertaken by scientists were limited by the volume of research that could be gathered in any period of time. Since it started, The Big Microplastic Survey project has had a huge response, both from individuals who want to be involved in helping to resolve the microplastic issue, as well as academic institutions and government departments. The project has already reached 45 countries and will gather data and information that will help to understand the microplastics problem around the world.

The majority of microplastic data collection is being conducted by scientists, and while that work is vital, Just One Ocean says that more information is needed to fully understand the problem. The Big Microplastic Survey adds valuable data to enhance the work already being undertaken by scientists. Our grant will help the project to achieve its ultimate goal; the development of a collective, self-sustaining and openly accessible source of microplastic data for scientists and researchers, governments and non-government organisations.

David Jones, CEO and Founder of Just Once Ocean, said: “Whilst much of the world’s attention is focussed on larger pieces of waste littering our beaches and coastlines, microplastics are potentially a much greater threat. They attract toxins, are easily digested and are getting into our food chain. We know very little about the scale and the distribution of the problem, which is why we launched the Big Microplastic Survey. “In the future, this project will change our view from one of ignorance to understanding, and with that information, we will be better situated to tackle the problem. We are immensely grateful for the support from Clarity.”

David Honcoop, Managing Director at Clarity Environmental, explained why our committee chose to donate to this project: “Whilst microplastics are unseen, they are everywhere around us. It is an alarming issue and yet we don’t fully understand the scale of the problem or how it is impacting on marine wildlife and human health. I am delighted that we are able to support this project to help it progress into the next phase. The development of a database will provide vital information for scientists and decision-makers.”

You can find out more about our commitment to being a good business doing good, see the donations we have made this year and recommend a charity to our Clarity Cares donation committee in the Clarity Cares section of our website.

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