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Topic Reading-Vol.2208-4/28/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
It's not just the oceans: Microplastic pollution is all around us
Microplastics are small plastic pieces less than five millimeters long. They come not only from plastic products, such as bottles and bags, but also from cosmetics, clothing and industrial processes. While plastic waste floating in the oceans and seas is visibly recognizable, microplastics aren’t. They can be swallowed by marine creatures like fish, and then their eaters including humans. Indeed, microplastic can be harmful to the ocean and aquatic life, the food chain, and the environment.
Unfortunately, plastic pollution doesn’t just stop there. There are other kinds and forms of microplastic that can be more directly harmful to the lives on the ground. They are the ones from sewage sludge that contain cosmetics and clothing fibers. These microplastics can be absorbed by humans either from tap water or well water. Also, there are airborne microplastics both outdoor and indoor like the ones from carpets and clothes.
The problem is that some plastics can take hundreds of years to biodegrade, and the effects of such pollution aren’t well studied yet.
Enjoy reading the article and watching the video to learn what potential harm plastics are causing to humans, other creatures, and the environments.

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