Earth's Deepest Point Not Safe from Pollution

The Mariana Trench can be found in the western Pacific Ocean, just north-west of Guam. It's deep. 

In fact, it's the deepest part of our earth at a staggering 10,994 metres. To put that into perspective, the trench is deeper than Mount Everest is high; Mount Everest is a mere 8,848 metres. 

Yet, despite its isolation and inaccessibility, evidence of humanity can be found at the bottom of the trench nonetheless. 

A new report has shown that levels of pollution are so high in the trench that it outpaces the amounts found in one of the most polluted rivers in China. Crabs in the Liaohe River in China are filled with toxic pollutants, but the report found that crustaceans in the trench had 50 times more pollutants present in them than their colleagues in the Liaohe River. 

The chemicals found are persistent organic pollutants, or POPs, which were produced during the period between 1930 and 1970. POPs do not degrade. Ever. And the negative health impacts of POPs to humans and animals are significant. 

The finding goes to prove to us that the impacts of humanity are able to reach every single part of our globe. We often think of the deep sea as invulnerable to human impact, but this is not the case. 

Ocean pollution continues to be one of the biggest threats to our oceans, and the creatures in it, to this day. And threats to the oceans are threats to us. 

Because the Mariana Trench has little water flow, these toxic pollutants are likely to remain and continue to cause devastation to this important and sensitive ecological area. 

Leave a comment