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Posted on: October 3, 2019

Microplastics in the San Francisco Bay

The Mercury News recently published an article entitled, "Plastic tide: 7 trillion bits wash into bay every year."  A three-year study by the San Francisco Estuary Institute found that billions of pieces of “microplastic” (particles smaller than 5 millimeters each) pour through the Bay Area’s 40 sewage treatment plants every year.  The study also revealed that storm drains were the largest source of the particles. Storm drains collect stormwater from impervious surfaces such as streets, driveways, and sidewalks and carry the water to local creeks and on to the San Francisco Bay without any water treatment. Pollutants washed into the storm drains by rain include food packaging, rubber from vehicles tires, and even textiles, all of which are contributors to the toxic problem of microplastic in the Bay.

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Posted on: November 22, 2016