University Presentation Showcase: Undergraduate Division

Project Title

Micro plastics in drinking water

Presenter Hometown

richmond

Major

chemistry

Department

Chemistry

Mentor

Dr. Pei Gao

Mentor Department

Chemistry

Abstract

More than 240 million tons of plastic is mass produced and used each year, a rough estimate of 10 % of the plastic accumulates in surface waters and shorelines14. Research revealed debris collected from shorelines worldwide was 75% plastic averaging a density of 100,000 particles per m8. The pollution of plastic not only accumulates in aquatic environments but has begun to appear in the biology of organisms by means of ingestion of primary micro particles from secondary particles. Studies have revealed primary sources of micro plastics to be polyethylene, polypropylene, and polystyrene particles that are consistent in fecal samples of marine animals across several aquatic environments9.The studies and research gathered from the growing concerns of micro plastics into major waterways, has recently shifted to micro plastic contamination in drinking water. The occurrence of micro plastics has been documented in water, food and even air and the implications of for human health via contamination has been evaluated15. Micro plastics generally range 1mm- 5mm in size and are hard to remove via water filtration. The resident time of residual micro plastics in freshwater environments is longer than the resident times marine environments due to the area of flow. Longer resident times in freshwater environments enables contamination flow into groundwater sources that process drinking water. During this study micro plastic contamination is reviewed, as well as sources for contamination that include filtering, cleaning and packaging of bottled mineral water.

Presentation format

Poster

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Micro plastics in drinking water

More than 240 million tons of plastic is mass produced and used each year, a rough estimate of 10 % of the plastic accumulates in surface waters and shorelines14. Research revealed debris collected from shorelines worldwide was 75% plastic averaging a density of 100,000 particles per m8. The pollution of plastic not only accumulates in aquatic environments but has begun to appear in the biology of organisms by means of ingestion of primary micro particles from secondary particles. Studies have revealed primary sources of micro plastics to be polyethylene, polypropylene, and polystyrene particles that are consistent in fecal samples of marine animals across several aquatic environments9.The studies and research gathered from the growing concerns of micro plastics into major waterways, has recently shifted to micro plastic contamination in drinking water. The occurrence of micro plastics has been documented in water, food and even air and the implications of for human health via contamination has been evaluated15. Micro plastics generally range 1mm- 5mm in size and are hard to remove via water filtration. The resident time of residual micro plastics in freshwater environments is longer than the resident times marine environments due to the area of flow. Longer resident times in freshwater environments enables contamination flow into groundwater sources that process drinking water. During this study micro plastic contamination is reviewed, as well as sources for contamination that include filtering, cleaning and packaging of bottled mineral water.