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Cornwall beach polluted by mass of microplastics

Cornwall beach polluted by mass of microplastics

Published by Sarah Yeoman at 7:02am 3rd February 2019. (Updated at 7:32am 3rd February 2019)

Masses of microplastics have been found washed up on a beach near Newquay.

The nurdles were discovered across the sand and in the water at Watergate Bay last week.

Campaigners spent hours on their hands and knees trying to clean the beach after the big 'dump' from the sea.

The group Beach Guardian is warning that the problem continues to get worse and wants more to be done to tackle it.

"We have been monitoring the nurdle/microplastic problem down on Watergate for the last couple of months.

"We know that Watergate is a particular hotspot for these plastics so whenever there is a big ‘dump’ of them on the beach we try and head down with our Nurdle Trommel to try and tackle it.

"Really, I was only heading down there for a dog walk with my friend Alisha this week, but we were both heartbroken to see the return of the microplastics.

"We spent hours on our hands and knees trying to scrape as much as we could off the sand with our hands and into bin bags, but had to stop once the bags were almost too heavy and we were soaked through.

"Which is why I returned the next day with my dad, Rob, and the Nurdle Trommel and in the same amount of time we managed to pretty much clear the whole beach.

"Though, it’s hard to feel celebratory, as I know that by now they will probably have come back in again on the next tide.

"We can keep working as hard as we can but change needs to come from higher up.

"We can keep 'mopping the floor' but the problem won’t end unless the ‘tap is turned off’."

Emily, Beach Guardian

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