Look almost anywhere — in your food, in your water, in your body — and youre likely to find microplastics. These tiny particles, ranging in size from microscopic to 5 millimeters long, are infused in cosmetics and fertilizers. Theyre released unintentionally when we wash clothes made from polyester and nylon, or when the rubber hits the road as were driving. And they are produced when plastic products like bottles or packaging break down into smaller and smaller pieces.
POLITICO presents plastics by the numbers.
Microplastics have been found in the air, in animals, in food and beverages and in human feces.
Drinking water: A 2017 study by Orb Media tested tap water samples from more than a dozen countries on five continents, and found microplastics in 83 percent. For bottled water, stats were even worse: 93 percent of samples contained some microplastics.
Beer: Researchers found plastic fibers in German and American beer. In a U.S. study last year, an average of four particles were found per liter of beer.
Fish: Microplastics turn up in many commercially fished species, including herring, mackerel, cod and carp.
Mussels: Scientists at the University of Ghent estimated that some EU shellfish consumers eat 11,000 pieces of plastic each year.
Air: Plastic fibers can disintegrate and float into the air in indoor and outdoor settings, and theres some evidence they may be inhaled. The jury is still out on whether these get stuck in lungs or are cleared out.
Pigs and chicken: Fish meal is used in poultry production and rearing pigs, so microplastics Read More – Source