Since modern plastic was first mass-produced, 8 billion tons have been manufactured. And when it's thrown away, it doesn't just disappear. Much of it crumbles into small pieces. Scientists call the tiny pieces "microplastics" and define them as objects smaller than 5 millimeters -- about the size of one of the letters on a computer keyboard. Researchers started to pay serious attention to microplastics in the environment about 15 years ago. They're in oceans, rivers and lakes. They're also in soil. Recent research in Germany found that fertilizer made from composted household waste contains microplastics. And, even more concerning, microplastics are in drinking water. In beer. In sea salt. In fish and shellfish. How microplastics get into animals is something of a mystery, and Chelsea Rochman is trying to solve it.rnrnSince she started studying microplastics, Rochman has found them in the outflow from sewage treatment plants. And they've shown up in insects, worms, clams, fish and birds. To study how that happens, [researcher Kennedy Bucci] makes her own microplastics from the morning's collection. She takes a postage stamp-size piece of black plastic from the jar, and grinds it into particles using a coffee grinder. "So this is the plastic that I feed to the fish," she says. The plastic particles go into beakers of water containing fish larvae from fathead minnows, the test-animals of choice in marine toxicology. Tanks full of them line the walls of the lab. Bucci uses a pipette to draw out a bunch of larvae that have already been exposed to these ground-up plastic particles. The larva's gut is translucent. We can see right into it. "You can see kind of a line of black, weirdly shaped black things," she points out. "Those are the microplastics." The larva has ingested them. Rochman says microplastic particles can sicken or even kill larvae and fish in their experiments.
Water is something that every living thing needs, but it can be problematic making sure that water gets to every living thing - not just people and animals, but plants as well. Irrigation is important for farming, but it's often ineffective and wasteful.
2017/05/31: Bangalore was once the icon of a globalized, high tech, utopian future. Now it's the thirsty sign of a global catastrophe
News of the poisoned water crisis in Flint has reached a wide audience around the world. The basics are now known: the Republican governor, Rick Snyder, nullified the free elections in Flint, deposed the mayor and city council, then appointed his own man to run the city. To save money, they decided ...
2016-01-20: why are the countries of Persian Gulf region announcing ambitios plan for renewable energy when the fossil fuels they produce is so cheap?
Heavy buildings and depleted aquifers are a bad combination.
The military targeting of civilian infrastructure, especially of water supplies, is a war crime under the Geneva Conventions, writes Nafeez Ahmed. Yet this is precisely what NATO did in Libya, while blaming the damage on Gaddafi himself. Since then, the country's water infrastructure - and the suffering of its people - has only deteriorated further.
After decades of theorizing and searching, scientists are reporting that they've found a massive reservoir of water in the Earth's mantle - a reservoir so
Late-summer 2014 has brought uncomfortable news for residents of the U.S. Southwest - and I'm not just talking about 109-degree heat.
Please enable cookies on your web browser in order to continue.
Researchers from Northwestern University and the University of New Mexico report evidence for potentially oceans worth of water deep beneath the United States. Though not in the familiar liquid form-the ingredients for water are bound up in rock deep in the Earth's mantle-the discovery may represent the planet's largest water reservoir.
by Geoffrey Matthews In Our Common Future, the 1987 report of the United Nations World Commission on Environment and Development, sustainable development is described as a process of change which meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs and aspirations. To achieve this objective,
On Monday, March 24, I leave on a trip to witness an event I never thought I'd see: the Colorado River flowing through its delta toward the sea.
And why it's too late for the rain.
mWater creates world changing technologies for water, sanitation and health.
The snowpack in the Sierra Nevada mountains is way low, suggesting that Californians can look forward to a year of drought and water shortages.
While public health advocates have sung the praises of tap water for years, Coca-Cola has been focusing on its own covert assault on the affordable, healthful, and refreshing beverage. Unbeknownst to many in the nutrition and public health world, the soft drink giant launched a "Cap the Tap" program-aimed at restaurants-in 2010, described in the
We couldn't find the page you were looking for. This is either because: