You already know how bad plastic bottles are for the planet. We go through a million of them per minute and are generally terrible at recycling. As a result, bottles join other plastic waste in clogging up waterways, harming wildlife and accumulating in delicate ecosystems.
Taking a sip of bottled water might come with more than you bargained for.
The water sold in plastic bottles contains microplastics at levels that might endanger human health, according to a recent study. As a result, the World Health Organization (WHO) plans to investigate the potential health risks of ingesting plastic.
Microplastics are pieces of plastic that have broken down a size smaller than a fingernail. About 275,000 metric tons of the stuff enter our waterways each year, according to some estimates.
We don’t yet know how microplastics affect our health, but there’s reason to think that their buildup in our systems wouldn’t be good for us.
We already know that when microplastics build up in animals like fish, they affect their behavior and alter their hormones. Some chemicals in plastic are known to have similar effects on humans.
The shocking thing is that the amount of microplastic found in plastic bottles was double what scientists found in tap water.
It’s difficult to imagine a solution that would take care of the problem completely. Better filtration is just a temporary solution to a much larger problem.