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At least 8 million tons of plastic end up in our oceans every year, and make up 80% of all marine debris from surface waters to deep-sea sediments.

Source: IUCN – International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Our home. Our responsibility.

Our rivers and oceans are our lifeblood – a resource that connects us all and provides us with food, travel, trade, recreation, inspiration and beauty.

But climate change and pollution are threatening to destroy our marine environment and unless we take rapid action, the consequences for marine life and the ocean ecosystem could be devastating.

At Hull we're working hard to reduce the impact of chemicals, plastics and synthetic fibres on waters around the world. Our research uncovers shocking new evidence of pollution and explores ways of changing destructive practices.  Find out more below.

Problems are only problems until solutions are found. Find your solutions at the University of Hull. Let's get on with it.

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Take the plunge and study with us – you, too, could make a difference.

Our research makes a difference

We are a leading centre for research into environmental issues of global importance. Here is just a selection of our marine research. 


What do microplastics mean for our oceans?

Odds are that when you’re washing your face or spin cycling your clothes, you’re probably not thinking about the state of a whale’s stomach. Or what’s lurking inside your next cod and chips, for that matter.

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Plastics collaboratory

The Plastics Collaboratory is a diverse group of researchers from across the University. It aims to understand the pathways and interactions of plastics in the environment, identify the gaps and leaks in a plastics circular economy, and explore and develop new pathways to an enhanced circularity in plastics use.

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Rivers of plastic

Rivers of plastic

A team of researchers from the University of Hull are documenting plastic waste in one of the world’s most polluted mega-rivers, with the aim of developing solutions to mitigate the mounting issue.

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Shore Crab with eggs and larvae

Ocean acidification threatens marine life

Our scientists discovered how increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere are making our seas more acidic, making it harder for marine creatures to find a mate, locate food or sniff out predators.

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Army of citizen scientists help sample hundreds of miles of waterways

Chemicals in our waterways

Chemicals found in personal care products and pharmaceuticals are accumulating in our rivers and estuaries and altering the gender of wildlife and their ability to reproduce.

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Testing water samples

Sensing and safeguarding the water environment

Researchers across the Science and Engineering are devising and testing sensor technologies that aim measure levels and movement of nutrients, geochemicals and polluting compounds for more effective safeguarding of our water environment.

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We love what we do

Meet our environmental experts