Plastics in our waste streams are breaking down into tiny particles, causing potentially catastrophic consequences for human health and our aquatic systems, finds research from the University of Surrey and Deakin’s Institute for Frontier Materials in a new study published by Journal of Water Research.
Led by Dr Judy Lee and Marie Enfrin from the Department of Chemical and Process Engineering at the University of Surrey and Dr Ludovic Dumée at Deakin’s Institute for Frontier Materials, the project investigated nano and microplastics in water and wastewater treatment processes. The team found that tiny pieces of plastic break down further during treatment processes, reducing the performance of treatment plants and impacting on water quality.
There has been substantial study of microplastics pollution, but their interaction with water and wastewater treatment processes had not been fully understood until now.
Approximately 300 million tons of plastic are produced globally each year and up to 13 million tons of that is released into rivers and oceans, contributing to approximately 250 million tons of plastic by 2025. Since plastic materials are not generally degradable through weathering or ageing, this accumulation of plastic pollution in the aquatic environment creates a major concern.
The research highlights the current difficulty in detecting the presence of nano and microplastics in treatment systems. In order to ensure water quality meets the required safety standards and to reduce threats to our ecosystems, new detection strategies are needed with the aim of limiting the number of nano and microplastics in water and wastewater treatment systems.
Dr Lee, Project Lead and Senior Lecturer at the University of Surrey, said: “The presence of nano and microplastics in water has become a major environmental challenge. Due to their small size, nano and microplastics can easily be ingested by living organisms and travel along water and wastewater treatment processes. In large quantities they impact the performance of water treatment processes by clogging up filtration units and increasing wear and tear on materials used in the design of water treatment units.”
Read the full report here: Nano/microplastics in water and wastewater treatment processes – Origin, impact and potential solutions. Marie Enfrin, Ludovic F. Dumée, Judy Lee.
The Latest on: Microplastics
via Google News
The Latest on: Microplastics
- Microplastics are now part of human food chain, says NGOon January 15, 2021 at 7:43 pm
Writes an open letter to CM on enforcement of plastic ban Peeved over the fact that a ban on the use of single-use plastic bags imposed by the state government in 2016 has not been implemented, a ...
- Arctic Ocean has ‘pervasive spread’ of microplastics linked to laundryon January 15, 2021 at 6:55 am
Some 92 per cent of microplastic pollution found in seawater samples near the ocean surface were made up of synthetic fibres, resembling those used in clothing and textiles ...
- Microplastics In Seafood From Goa Estuary "Worrisome": Studyon January 14, 2021 at 6:43 am
The levels of microplastics found in fish and other seafood samples from the Sal Estuary in Goa is worrisome, a study by researchers of the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) in Panaji has said.
- Study in Goa flags alarming levels of microplastics in seafoodon January 14, 2021 at 5:02 am
The levels of microplastics found in fish and other seafood samples from the Sal Estuary in Goa is worrisome, a study by researchers of the National Institute of Oceanography (NIO) here has said. The ...
- Arctic Ocean being polluted by tiny microplastics from our clothes, study findson January 13, 2021 at 2:17 pm
Microplastics that have escaped from clothes while they are being washed are polluting the Arctic Ocean and pose a risk to the wildlife that live there.
- Most Microplastics in The Arctic Don't Come From Trash - They're From Our Clotheson January 12, 2021 at 5:41 pm
Microplastics are everywhere. These tiny plastic fragments can be found throughout the oceans, infiltrating the animals within it, the food we eat, and even our children.
- 92% of microplastics in the Arctic Ocean are synthetic fibreson January 12, 2021 at 9:26 am
Canadian experts sampled seawater from 71 locations, finding that synthetic fibres more broadly make up types 92 per cent of microplastic pollution in the Arctic.
- Microplastics found across the Arctic may be fibres from laundryon January 12, 2021 at 8:04 am
Polyester fibres, probably from textile manufacturing and laundry, make up the majority of microplastic pollution in the Arctic ...
- Microplastics from laundry are flooding into the Arcticon January 12, 2021 at 8:00 am
That means that textiles, laundry, and wastewater are likely big culprits when it comes microplastics polluting the world’s oceans, according to study authors. The polyester fibers they found in the ...
- Microplastics and our planet: Part 2 – developing a strategyon January 12, 2021 at 2:19 am
It is well documented that microplastics present a major problem for life on Earth and the problem is accelerating. How can humanity move away from its reliance on plastics? We look at the EU solution ...
via Bing News