Microplastics in the soil point to another potential ecosystem collapse

When these particles are eaten by earthworms, the results are not good.

Photo by: Andia/ Universal Images Group via Getty Images
  • New research from Anglia Ruskin University states that microplastics in soil are causing earthworms to lose weight.
  • Soil affected by microplastics produces less crop yield due to less productive earthworms and lower pH levels.
  • If this trend continues, our entire agricultural system could be compromised.
Keep reading Show less

Grocery store-bought tea bags release billions of microplastic particles into every cup

Those silky tea bags might be releasing plastics into your digestive system.

Image source: Illustration by Florian Gaertner / Getty Images
  • A new study at McGill University discovered that many tea bags leach billions of plastic particles into every cup.
  • While the health dangers are unknown, past research uncovered serious problems in other mammals when consuming such particles.
  • Scientists estimate that between five and 13 million metric tons of plastic are dumped into oceans every single year.
Keep reading Show less

Bio-plastic made from fish scales wins U.K. James Dyson award

Bio-plastics could prove to be a suitable alternative to single-use plastics.

Dyson
  • The flexible bio-plastic, called MarinaTex, breaks down within about four to six weeks.
  • One Atlantic cod contains enough waste to produce hundreds of MarinaTex bags.
  • More than half of single-use plastics end up in the world's oceans.
Keep reading Show less

Why American towns are more selective than ever about what they recycle

An ecological silver bullet is missing the target altogether.

Image source: Alba_alioth/Shutterstock
  • The seeming success of worldwide recycling depended on China's now abandoned role.
  • Municipalities are starting to limit the materials they'll recycle, and landfills are growing.
  • The real solution to our waste problem may lie in our past.
Keep reading Show less

'It is raining plastic': Microplastics found in Colorado rainwater

The startling discovery comes from researchers with the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS
  • About 90 percent of rainwater samples collected from the Denver-Boulder area of Colorado contained microplastics.
  • Researchers aren't exactly sure how the plastic ended up in the rainwater.
  • Microplastics have invaded nearly every part of the environment, but scientists still aren't sure how these plastic bits might be affecting human health.
Keep reading Show less