This webinar will help you learn about accumulating plastic pollution and ways to reduce it. Our streets, beaches and waterways are polluted with single-use plastic containers, straws, drink bottles, bags and cigarette butts. What we can't see are the serious consequences of that plastic once it degrades into trillions of tiny pieces. First coined "microplastics" in 2004 to describe particles under 5mm in length, many are the result of larger pieces of plastic that break down through exposure to sunlight and waves. However, other sources of tiny plastic pieces are being added to the environment at alarming rates. Newer sources include microbeads in soaps, toothpaste and personal care products. Artificial fleece and polyester fabrics that replaced natural wool and cotton fabrics also shed thousands of plastic microscopic fibers into wastewater. Microplastic pollution is now so widespread that it is recognized as a serious global environmental issue. Increasing scientific research indicates that these particles enter the food web and can end up on our dinner plates, though little is known about their impact on human health. Anna McCartney and Marti Martz from Pennsylvania Sea Grant will share information about the impacts and possible solutions, including what some groups are already doing.
The live webinars will occur from 12:00 to 1:00 PM and is accessible at: https://meeting.psu.edu/water1