没有合成，塑料ky面料，我们就没有瑜珈裤瑜伽-ING，没有弹性的袜子，不吸水运动衫。我们可以穿着这些塑料注入的衣服一次，在洗衣机扔，并重复，每个周期脱落可能有10万名合成纤维。许多颗粒最终得到倾倒入河流和海洋，他们在动物要嵌入和水柱的涡流，并在沉积物中，几乎不朽的文物贴敷 our distant descendants to one day dig up.
In 2015, Congress banned microbeads, those little bits of 塑料 used in face scrubs that companies thought would be A-OK for the environment but instead ended up tainting the world so thoroughly that the public shamed the industry to change. In the short few years since then, more 和 more research has shown just how pervasive other micro塑料 pollution has become: Bits of synthetic fiber like polyester have been blowing to the 山的顶部 和 进入北极 和 washing into watersheds like the San Francisco Bay, which collects 7 trillion micro塑料 particles every year。你喝 a good amount of the stuff， 事实上。
“It's reaching a crescendo with every new study that comes out that shows that microplastics are in our food, in our drinking water,” says Nick Lapis, director of advocacy for Californians Against Waste. “I think it's going to reach a point of no return where people say 'I don't want to be consuming 塑料,' 和 I think we're close to there.”
To get a sense of the scale of this problem, let’s bring it down to a single city: Toronto. 一项研究 计算，洗衣单负荷可能棚91000到138000微纤维。全市120万个家庭做了一个平均每年219个负载。所以每年，多伦多可能是洗230000亿至36万亿微纤维到其废水。如此，污水处理的地方83之间隔绝于塑料微粒的99.9％的从输入，这取决于设备和你在寻找什么研究，但仍然意味着234十亿至356个十亿微纤维流入环境，每年从一个城市。
And the problem is getting worse. The rise of so-called fast fashion—cheap, crappy clothing meant to last but a moment—has flooded the market with garments that easily fray and more readily shed synthetic fibers. In 1950, the textile 和 clothing industries used about 2 million tons of synthetic materials; by 2010 it had climbed to 5000万吨. Stretchy jeans, 袜子, undies—you name it, 和 it’s probably made at least partly of synthetic materials.
A picture is still emerging of what all this micro塑料 pollution amounts to. In August, the World Health Organization reported that we’re all drinking heaps of micro塑料s. It’s still too early to say that’s a bad thing, but it’s also too early to say it’s 不 一件坏事。
“One of the challenges is demonstrating there actually is harm from microfibers,” says Marcus Eriksen, research director of the 5 Gyres Institute. “If you can't show definitive proof that this causes pain to someone, people are going to say, 'Why change?' I've always argued that it's so ubiquitous that we really don't have the luxury of waiting until a problem happens.”