If microplastics could talk to us, they would make a lot of noise. The tiny particles, added to some personal care products like face washes and toothpaste, are ubiquitous in the Great Lakes.
Since the emergence of mass-produced plastics in the mid-19th century, it’s estimated that more than 6.3 billion metric tons of plastic waste have been generated --- equivalent to the weight of…
When you think of microplastics, you might think of the microbeads in facial scrubs or toothpaste, but these are actually just one type of microplastics. Another major source is the breaking down of larger pieces of plastic, such as litter, into smaller and smaller pieces.
By IJC staff Gordon Walker, chair of the IJC’s Canadian Section, recently waded into the issue of microplastics in the Great Lakes. These plastics can enter the lakes via wastewater, manufacturing processes and runoff.