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Could a caterpillar which munches on plastic bags be the key to tackling plastic pollution?
Researchers at Cambridge University have discovered that the larvae of the moth, which typically eats wax in beehives, can also eat plastic. In the same way that the insect can digest beeswax, it can also break down the chemical bonds of plastic.
Every year, around 80 million tonnes of plastic polyethylene are produced around the world but it can take up to hundreds of years to fully decompose plastic.
By contrast, caterpillars can make holes in plastic bags in under an hour.
The research has been published in the Current Biology journal.
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