The words “stop sucking” have taken on different meanings, but with the introduction of metal straws the greenest of them is to vow off of straws. If the hype around the banning of plastic straws seems to be over the top, chew on this for a moment: some of the most remote regions of earth have exhibited signs of plastic pollution, from the Galápagos Islands to the French Pyrenees Mountains and the deepest parts of the oceans. In a study published in April in Nature Geoscience, researchers found large amounts of plastic waste on a remote catchment in the Pyrenees mountains. The researchers analysed samples taken over five months in a remote area of the Pyrenees (the nearest village was 6km away, the nearest town 25km, and the nearest city 120km) and found that on average, 365 plastic particles, films and fibres were deposited every day. This study was the first to find that microplastics can travel by air and pollute areas as far as 100km away. In the Mariana Trench, the lowest point...

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