Green Pulse Podcast: Getting to the bottom of plastic pollution

Dr Denise Hardesty is a principal research scientist and team leader at Australia's national science agency, the CSIRO. She is a global expert on plastic waste. PHOTO: CSIRO

Green Pulse Ep 35: Getting to the bottom of plastic pollution

16:35 mins

Synopsis: Every first and third Monday of the month, The Straits Times analyses the beat of the changing environment, from biodiversity conservation to climate change in this podcast series.

Every year, millions of tonnes of plastic waste end up in the ocean. From plastic bags to bottles, cigarette lighters to fishing nets and flip flops, the trash fouls beaches, kills seabirds and marine animals and creates vast garbage patches.

In this episode, ST's environment correspondent Audrey Tan and climate change editor David Fogarty speak with scientist Denise Hardesty, a specialist in plastic pollution and illegal fishing at Australia's national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation.

Dr Hardesty is a co-author of a recent study which calculated that there is about 14 million tonnes of microplastic waste at the bottom of the world's oceans, showing nowhere is free from plastic pollution.

They discuss the following points:

1. What a new CSIRO study on microplastics in the ocean has found (3:47)

2. Whether microplastics consumed by seafood could end up on dinner plates (6:25)

3. What happens to plastic when they enter the ocean? (8:17)

4. What are the solutions to dealing with the scourge of plastic? (11:30)

Produced by: Audrey Tan (, David Fogarty ( & Ernest Luis

Follow Audrey Tan on Twitter

Follow David Fogarty on Twitter

Edited by: Adam Azlee

Follow Green Pulse Podcast series and rate us on:


Apple Podcasts:


Google Podcasts:


Feedback to:

Join ST's Telegram channel and get the latest breaking news delivered to you.