Canadian researchers will receive $2.7 million to research the effects of ocean contaminants on fish, marine mammals, and other aquatic species, the government of Canada announced on Monday.
The funds will be provided through Fisheries and Oceans Canada's National Contaminants Advisory Group and will be allocated to 13 universities and not-for-profit research organizations for projects on aquaculture therapeutants, pesticides, and other worrisome pollutants like microplastics.
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Microplastics are tiny pieces of plastic that end up in the oceans because of human activity. Animals ingest the microplastics, which can not only cause injuries and death, but can also lead to humans ingesting them too.
“Ninety per cent of the plastics that you find suspended in ocean water are actually pieces from polyester garments or nylon garments,” Ocean Wise Conservation Association technician Stephen Chastain told Global News.
A $1.3-million partnership between Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Pollution Research Program to further study the impact of microplastics was also announced this week.
“This research will help us make informed, science-based decisions to support healthy ecosystems and fisheries," Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard said in a statement.
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