Microbeads have been recognized as a water quality issue over the last few years. They’ve been found in the ocean, the Great Lakes and also in Lake Champlain. Last year, Congress passed a law that will phase out the use of microbeads in personal care products in an effort to reduce the number of beads reaching surface water.
Microbeads aren’t the only form of micro-plastic in our surface waters. The USGS has been investigating other plastics in the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes ECHO highlights some of their findings – fragments, foams and fibers are also present. Microfibers are particularly abundant but it’s not yet clear where they may be coming from. Take a look at the ECHO article for the full story.