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Earth Medicine Science

Microplastics Found In 93 Percent of Bottled Water Tested In Global Study (www.cbc.ca) 177

An anonymous reader quotes a report from CBC.ca: The bottled water industry is estimated to be worth nearly $200 billion a year, surpassing sugary sodas as the most popular beverage in many countries. But its perceived image of cleanliness and purity is being challenged by a global investigation that found the water tested is often contaminated with tiny particles of plastic. The research was conducted on behalf of Orb Media, a U.S-based non-profit journalism organization with which CBC News has partnered. Professor Sherri Mason, a microplastics researcher who carried out the laboratory work at the State University of New York, and his team tested 259 bottles of water purchased in nine countries (none were bought in Canada). Though many brands are sold internationally, the water source, manufacturing and bottling process for the same brand can differ by country. The 11 brands tested include the world's dominant players -- Nestle Pure Life, Aquafina, Dasani, Evian, San Pellegrino and Gerolsteiner -- as well as major national brands across Asia, Africa, Europe and the Americas. Researchers found 93 per cent of all bottles tested contained some sort of microplastic, including polypropylene, polystyrene, nylon and polyethylene terephthalate (PET).

Orb found on average there were 10.4 particles of plastic per liter that were 100 microns (0.10 mm) or bigger. This is double the level of microplastics in the tap water tested from more than a dozen countries across five continents, examined in a 2017 study by Orb that looked at similar-sized plastics. Other, smaller particles were also discovered -- 314 of them per liter, on average -- which some of the experts consulted about the Orb study believe are plastics but cannot definitively identify. The amount of particles varied from bottle to bottle: while some contained one, others contained thousands.

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Microplastics Found In 93 Percent of Bottled Water Tested In Global Study

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  • by Anonymous Coward

    when we introduce a cheap alternative to natural products, there's always a hidden cost the greedy selfish and irresponsible manufactures don't ever want to acknowledge

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Plastics are structurally modified oils (not chemically modified). They are no more or less biologically valuable than the base oils. Petroleum based plastics are a bit of a nuisance because the bacteria that eat oils of that chemistry are primarily found in ocean depths near natural oil leeks, and the plastics formed are fairly bouyant.

      I doubt anyone reading this has not eaten dairy plastics at some time or another. They aren't as complicated of flavors as bacterially or mold modified dairy materials, b

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Plastics are structurally modified oils (not chemically modified).

        Wrong. Completely, utterly ignorantly wrong.

        • by e r ( 2847683 )
          So your comeback is "nuh-uh!"? Good one.
        • I think it's an AC spoofing people. Its not nice to think that an anatomically modern human (well, enough fingers to operate a keyboard. Or use one of those ball-on-a-forehead things for the quadraplegic.) can be so badly misinformed about basic polymer chemistry. I mean, they cover this stuff in compulsory schooling these days.
    • by Oswald McWeany ( 2428506 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:43AM (#56269089)

      when we introduce a cheap alternative to natural products, there's always a hidden cost the greedy selfish and irresponsible manufactures don't ever want to acknowledge

      Doesn't have to be artificial. Could be natural too...

      Many years ago, when woody plants were first developing there was nothing in nature that could break down wood. There was a build up of wood all over the planet before organisms first learnt to devour them. I can't help but wonder if microfragments of wood and fragments of wood didn't "pollute" and "accumulate" in the world like plastic does today. Obviously, wood was created by biological processes, not man-driven processes, but it was essentially the same thing- an increasing volume of the planet's surface area being "polluted" by a product that can't and won't break down for potentially thousands of years and just accumulating.

      Eventually organisms will evolve to devour plastic and break down those yummy hydrocarbon bonds. Until then, we've got a mess on our hands, like the world did when wood was an undigestable product.

      • Millions of years from now, sure.

        That was what the Andromeda Strain was a strain of -- long organic molecules including plastics.

      • Eventually organisms will evolve to devour plastic and break down those yummy hydrocarbon bonds.

        Maybe even in as little as a few hundred million years. In evolutionary terms, "eventually" tends to be a very, very long time.

      • Many years ago, when woody plants were first developing there was nothing in nature that could break down wood.

        Hmm, problem is that the relatively small number of phyla of microorganisms that can digest cellulose and lignin are probably considerably older than the land plants which we're most familiar with. When land plants developed - well that's pretty clear from the fossil record - about 410 Myr ago [wikipedia.org] ; but I don't know how much marine plants use cellulose and lignin.

        There was a spike in atmospheric oxyge

  • by DeplorableCodeMonkey ( 4828467 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:08AM (#56268915)

    The top 10 rivers that dump plastic waste into the oceans are in Africa and Asia [treehugger.com]. 6 of them are in China.

    And that, dear friends, is yet another data point about "free trade." That tasty arbitrage that lets you get your iPhone 75 for cheaper than if it were produced domestically is brought to you buy a country that gives absolutely zero fucks about its environment or whether or not you're eating microplastics in your food.

    Enjoy.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      What are the biggest sources of plastic waste?

    • That tasty arbitrage that lets you get your iPhone 75 for cheaper than if it were produced domestically is brought to you buy a country that gives absolutely zero fucks about its environment

      Hey...better they destroy their environment, than us doing it to our own, eh?

      Besides, with the extreme population numbers they have over there, they can easily afford to thin the herd a bit.

    • In other words, a country just like America!

    • Your implication is that a change in trade policy would help resolve this problem. I vehemently disagree. At best, it would lessen the magnitude. African/Asian nations aren't going to just stop rampant pollution in their manufacturing processes because you put tariffs on their goods. They're just going to TRADE less of them to YOU.

      Ultimately you have no leverage over other nations attitudes on pollution other than to somehow try to get their population to a point where they care more about the long term

      • Ultimately you have no leverage over other nations attitudes on pollution other than to somehow try to get their population to a point where they care more about the long term effects of pollution on their health

        We do have leverage, we just aren't willing to use it. That leverage is both trade and military force.

        Consider an alternate history where the federal government vetoed NAFTA, did not give MFN status to China and had kept a 600-1000 ship USN after the Cold War. None of that is wild thinking as those

        • I'm trying to imagine a naval blockade line around china that puts it out of the range of ballistic missiles.
          I'm also trying to imagine how a nuclear armed country with the potential to grossly overpower us (no matter what the power disparity is, the potential is there) responds to an internationally accepted act of war (blockade)
          I think you've been drinking too much of Jingo's kool-aid.
          • I'm trying to imagine a naval blockade line around china that puts it out of the range of ballistic missiles.

            China has just enough nukes that they'd have a choice: nuke our blockade line or nuke our cities. Also, let's be serious here. The main reason the United States is not taken seriously is that we're the world's cop always throwing our weight around and half-assing it. If our foreign policy were like China's, China would take us much more seriously if we barked at them because they'd know that anything

            • Nuke the blockade? Hell no. SRBMs and IRBMs are deployed all the time in contemporary warfare. We also have all kinds of defense against them. That being said, in the fight against dropping ballistics down on ships vs. how many Aegis cruisers we can deploy... the ballistics will always win, because they are cheaper.
            • Also, I don't disagree that we're guilty of half-assing it.
              But to quote you, let's be real here.
              The day when we could push China around is long gone. In an all-out conventional war, they would win. In a limited engagement, they would win. They pushed us to the 38th parallel in Korea and held their ground with no appreciable anti-aircraft forces, or air superiority. We considered nuking the peninsula just to slow them down.
              Don't underestimate the power of an enemy that outnumbers you 4:1. That was Germany
    • Not just "top 10" but really nearly "only 10".

      From that site: âoeReducing plastic loads by 50% in the 10 top-ranked rivers would reduce the total river-based load to the sea by 45%.â

      Unless I miss my math, that would mean that these 10 supply NINETY PERCENT of the plastic load in the world's oceans.

      Can we reasonably agree that those countries are shitholes and we need to do something about it?

    • Yeah, but the plastic they dump is mostly from trash that was shipped to them to recycle.

  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:10AM (#56268927)
    So, lemme get this straight. The water that comes shipped in plastic, also contains plastic?! Mind. Blown.

    Next you're going to tell me that piping the universal solvent through lead pipes causes it to pick up lead.
    • by Anonymous Coward

      It is unfortunate that their study seemingly did not do any more detailed tests, but most bottles are PET, and most caps PE. So finding particles of those in the contents of the bottle should not be surprising.

      It is also possible that a lot of the particles get knocked out of the vessel during shipping, so tests performed at a factory would not pick up the real quantity the consumer ends up ingesting.

      But I have heard via word of mouth that you should not re-use PET bottles for long term storage of edibles,

    • by Ol Olsoc ( 1175323 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:57AM (#56269147)

      So, lemme get this straight. The water that comes shipped in plastic, also contains plastic?! Mind. Blown. Next you're going to tell me that piping the universal solvent through lead pipes causes it to pick up lead.

      The plastic almost certainly isn't coming from the water dissolving the plastic. Then there is always the issue of the tap water being tested being superior in this regard. You would think it would have a lot in it from the PVC pipes using that metric.

      What I find amusing about this is that people have been sold the idea that bottled water is somehow healthier. for us. Excluding places like Flint, Michigan, it isn't.

      We've had our tap water tested against bottled, and it's better in all respects. A tad hard, good Magnesium content, and the taste is right up there with pure spring water from the local mountains.

      Just remember folks, that Bottled water you just paid 3 bucks for 12 ounces was bottled by a company that can make more money the cheaper they produce the stuff. Since most people are convinced it is better for us, they'll keep buying it no matter what.

      • We've had our tap water tested against bottled, and it's better in all respects. A tad hard, good Magnesium content, and the taste is right up there with pure spring water from the local mountains.

        But did you have it tested against Fiji water?

        Just remember folks, that Bottled water you just paid 3 bucks for 12 ounces was bottled by a company that can make more money the cheaper they produce the stuff. Since most people are convinced it is better for us, they'll keep buying it no matter what.

        Fiji water is magical. I'm convinced of it.

        • We've had our tap water tested against bottled, and it's better in all respects. A tad hard, good Magnesium content, and the taste is right up there with pure spring water from the local mountains.

          But did you have it tested against Fiji water?

          Just remember folks, that Bottled water you just paid 3 bucks for 12 ounces was bottled by a company that can make more money the cheaper they produce the stuff. Since most people are convinced it is better for us, they'll keep buying it no matter what.

          Fiji water is magical. I'm convinced of it.

          Tastes okay - a little alkaline.

        • Gary Roberts would agree.

      • We've had our tap water tested against bottled, and it's better in all respects. A tad hard, good Magnesium content, and the taste is right up there with pure spring water from the local mountains.

        Consider yourself lucky. My tap water tastes like bleach and lime (the mineral, not the fruit). I've spent a lot of time and money trying to filter this water into something palatable with varied success including a number of different carbon filters and a reverse osmosis system. All produced water with an unsavory aftertaste.

        Currently, I "build" water by distilling it then adding back minerals to adjust the ph. It doesn't taste as good as spring water, but it's the best I've come up with so far. Before thi

      • by pots ( 5047349 )
        Several of the brands of bottled water that they tested are just tap water that is filtered and then bottled. So it might have some from the PVC pipes, but then some is being added by either the filtering or the bottling.
      • Flint's problem was self-inflicted, they quit buying water from Detroit and started sourcing from the Flint river, which is basically a cesspool and they didn't add the federally required phosphates to it. Now their water is sourced from lake Huron and doesn't require added phosphates, like Detroit's water is. Phosphates put a layer inside the pipes that prevents toxic lead and copper from leaching into the water.

        Almost every city still has lead pipes in the ground and a lot of homes have lead based soldere

        • Flint's problem was self-inflicted, they quit buying water from Detroit and started sourcing from the Flint river, which is basically a cesspool and they didn't add the federally required phosphates to it.

          Not certain of your point. But you are completely incorrect here. The "They" is not Flint The city of Flint Michigan was on the Detriot water system. The State appointed Emergency managers - not the local managers - made the determination to switch from the Detroit water system to the Flint River water system based on only financial considerations. According to the task force findings : "F-18. Emergency managers, not locally elected officials, made the decision to switch to the Flint River as Flint’s

          • The part I never understood about the Flint water crisis is why the State did not supply countertop filters [amazon.com] and a few replacement cartridges to each household. It would have offered immediate protection until the protective coating had a chance to rebuild, at maybe 20% of the price of the first emergency aid payment.

            • The part I never understood about the Flint water crisis is why the State did not supply countertop filters and a few replacement cartridges to each household. It would have offered immediate protection until the protective coating had a chance to rebuild, at maybe 20% of the price of the first emergency aid payment.

              It was probably the timing is my guess. I recall the very first reaction was denial that there was a problem, Where it gets really whacked is when the governor's representatives suggested, switching back t Detroit's water system, but the emergency manager refused. It isn't that the Governor and some others are without blame, but it is amazing that the emergency manager is not incarcerated. Relating to my beancounters not existing in reality, there are some calculations that can be done with the long term c

          • With the City of Flint under emergency management, the Flint Water Department rushed unprepared into full-time operation of the Flint Water Treatment Plant, drawing water from a highly corrosive source without the use of corrosion control Flint Water Advisory Task Force FINAL REPORT [michigan.gov] pg.15

            That's pretty much what I said, the Emergency Manager didn't put Flint into receivership, the Emergency Manager didn't neglect to replace lead municipal water pipes for decades, the Emergency Manager didn't fail to train

            • That's pretty much what I said,

              That isn't at all what you said. Allow me to refresh your memory:

              "Flint's problem was self-inflicted, they quit buying water from Detroit and started sourcing from the Flint river, which is basically a cesspool and they didn't add the federally required phosphates to it."

              So while there is a strong implication that you are positing that the citizens of Flint Michigan deserved to be poisoned by lead, I'll just write that off to your communications ability to be on par with your memory.

              the Emergency Manager didn't put Flint into receivership, the Emergency Manager didn't neglect to replace lead municipal water pipes for decades, the Emergency Manager didn't fail to train water treatment staff properly.

              Then you need to get in touch with the task force, and tell them that you - the random guy on Slashdot - have refuted all of their claims, and demand a formal investigation into the criminal activities of the Flint Water Advisory Task Force

              But the emergency manager was responsible for putting water into those pipes that would remove the protective layer. I would hope that unlike you, he did not wish to poison the people of Flint, but was acting out of ignorance.

              Issues with engineering and chemistry are involved, and just like the laws of physics, are not concerend with politics. You cannot pass a law that says poorly built bridges cannot fail. Gravity doesn't care. You can't pass a law saying that the speed of light is something other than what it is.

              The point is that lead pipes that have the right quality of water running through them quickly build up a protective layer that keeps lead out of the water. Send water with the incorrect quality of water through those pipes, typically "soft" water, or acidic water, and simple chemistry tells us that chemicals in the water will interact with the lead walls, causing lead compounds to enter the water.

              The decision was the emergency manager's decision, and it was made with the idea that teh emergency manager's decision trumps the laws of physics and chemistry. Despite your idea that the People of Flint deserved what they got, and that poisoning is a proper punishment for financial ineptitude, sorry, a whole lot of people including those with all of the evidence disagree with you.

              The only way that water form the Flint River should ever have been put into their water system would be if the entire water distribution infrastructure was changed. But that wouldn't have happened, because it would have cost too much money.

              • The only way that water form the Flint River should ever have been put into their water system would be if the entire water distribution infrastructure was changed. But that wouldn't have happened, because it would have cost too much money.

                Here's one thing you're not getting Flint's entire water distribution infrastructure is not significantly different from any city built before 1986; if your city was built before 1986, there is lead in your water.

                In 1986 Congress Amended the Safe Drinking Water Act, prohibiting the use of pipes, solder or flux that were not “lead free” in public water systems or plumbing in facilities providing water for human consumption. Use of Lead Free Pipes, Fittings, Fixtures, Solder and Flux for Drinking [epa.gov]

      • by pjt33 ( 739471 )

        This article has an explicitly international setting: why try to restrict its scope to the USA? FWIW the tap water where I live has so much chlorine added that I can smell it when I come out of the shower, and the supermarket's own brand bottled water costs about 9 Eurocents a litre (about 11 US cents for a bit more than 33 US ounces).

    • "Microplastics are the result of the breakdown of all the plastic waste that makes its way into landfills and oceans. "

      In addition, he article shows they are taking samples from water in glass bottles as well as plastic.

      Obvious is not a synonym for true.

      • I read, then searched, both articles and didn't find mention of testing glass bottles. The headline had me wondering if the water sources were contaminated with plastic, or the filtering process failed to remove it. I was looking for mention of them testing water from a deep spring that was shipped in glass bottles.

        Reading that they tested plastic bottles, and the acknowledgement that the act of opening the bottle could scrape measurable amounts of plastic into the water made the whole study useless to m

        • by PPH ( 736903 )

          water shipped in a container may contain microscopic particles of that container

          My water comes from a stream fed by a watershed on the side of a mountain. A mountain made of minerals. And my water is full of minerals*.

          Oh the horror!

          *Probably some traces of bear poop in there too.

    • by hey! ( 33014 )

      From TFA:

      Microplastics are the result of the breakdown of all the plastic waste that makes its way into landfills and oceans.

      In other words this is not the kind of contamination you'd expect coming from the bottle the water ships in. Given how slowly these compounds break down, with a sensitive enough assay you're bound to find this stuff everywhere in an industrialized country. Microplastics are found in most municipal tap water, which is the source for most bottled water. If your test is sufficiently sensitive, you'll find them in spring water due to worker, airborne and general environmental contamination.

      The ques

    • by GuB-42 ( 2483988 )

      Actually, water picks up very little lead from lead pipes unless the water is particularly soft/acidic. Scale prevents lead from getting into water.
      In fact, home diagnostics don't even consider lead pipes as a problem. Lead paints are a real issue though, they can flake off and get ingested.

  • It's a costly process, so you end up drinking this production "dirt". Cheers!

  • by stealth_finger ( 1809752 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:17AM (#56268937)
    Never touch the stuff, fish fuck in it!
  • Don't compare against nonexistent perfectly safe solution. We use plastic bottles because they were much less dangerous than glass bottles. If you're worried about the dangers of plastic in the containers leaching into the water, you have to compare to the dangers of the next best alternative - glass bottles and the cuts they could give you when they broke.

    Nothing in the world is 100% safe. You try to find what offers the best combination of utility and safety, and live with the inherent risks with th
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cayenne8 ( 626475 )

      We use plastic bottles because they were much less dangerous than glass bottles.

      Err...what danger???

      Seriously...I grew up when pretty much ALL store bought drinks were in glass.

      I remember buying cokes in regular sized and even 2L glass bottles, and as a kid...finding them and returning to the 7-11 to get the deposit back on them.

      I can assure you there were no mass outbreaks of cuts, dismemberments or death due to everything being in glass bottles.

      Sure, if you drop them, they can and did break, but at

      • It's not opportunity cost. It's just actual cost. Glass costs more to make, and ship (due to heavier weight).

        • by swb ( 14022 )

          I'll bet the real savings was in shipping, and not just the obvious local delivery (bottler to retailer) aspect. I'll bet that the savings might have been enough to eliminate entire bottling plants that serviced areas once too distance to ship glass bottles to.

      • Re:Opportunity cost (Score:4, Informative)

        by dryeo ( 100693 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @11:08AM (#56269585)

        Those 2 litre glass bottles were banned pretty quick as they had a habit of blowing up. As for danger, a friend cut her foot pretty bad wading in a local lake, same with my dog, who needed 3 or 4 stitches on her foot. Of course the real reason glass went away was cost.

    • You're saying that people are intentionally choosing a higher risk for cancer, over getting cut by broken glass? No. Sorry, but that's silly. People are intentionally choosing a higher risk of cancer for 1. cost and 2. convenience. That's all it is. People are generally stupid and frequently make really illogical, irrational decisions.
  • by Vermonter ( 2683811 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:30AM (#56269011)

    So you're telling me that someone tested a bunch of bottled water, almost all of which is inside plastic bottles, and they discovered plastic in them? And they were surprised by the findings?

    • The bottles themselves are made of PET, so it seems plausible to find that there. Why the rest of the plastics would be present are a mystery to me.
  • Two bottled waters I purchase are from a local well or mountain spring where there are no sources of animal waste or industrial pollution. My community has a recycling program that collects cans, bottles, and paper so these things don't go into oceans, rivers or a landfill..
    • by Oswald McWeany ( 2428506 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:51AM (#56269123)

      Two bottled waters I purchase are from a local well or mountain spring where there are no sources of animal waste or industrial pollution. My community has a recycling program that collects cans, bottles, and paper so these things don't go into oceans, rivers or a landfill..

      Microplastics do. That's the point of this study. When you open the cap, lots of microplastics deposit into the water (most too small to be seen with the eye, a significant portion small enough to be absorbed into your blood stream)- some are already in the water from the bottle and from other sources. Unless you pisas and kakas directly into a plastic recycling plant... all that plastic you are consuming passes through you and out of you in your waste... And eventually makes it's way into rivers and oceans. All those tiny microplastics will pass through many organisms...

      The question is, do all these microplastics going around your body cause any harm? We don't know.

      • The question is, do all these microplastics going around your body cause any harm? We don't know.

        Keep in mind in the US all packaging must be made of materials approved by the FDA as safe for food contact. [archive-it.org]

        I assume the source of the microplastics in the studdy is the container. The FDA assumes some of any container material will be ingested. Therefore containers can't be made of a material that is known to be harmful if ingested in small amounts.

        I'm honestly more worried about lead in drinking water, which is known to be harmful, than microscopic particles of food contact rated plastic.

      • From what I understand the big concern about plastic in the food chain isn't that it is toxic on its own. The danger is that toxins that we do worry about like heavy metals can stick to the bits of plastic. When those bits are consumed by animals they frequently aren't expelled through natural processes, which ends up concentrating those toxins. When that animal is in turn consumed by another bigger animal the cycle repeats. Eventually you end up with animals at the top of the food chain containing much hig

  • by coofercat ( 719737 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @09:33AM (#56269031) Homepage Journal

    Nestle make water? Really? Is that like the 'McWater' of the bottled water industry?

    As for Dasani - aren't they actually CocaCola company? Didn't they try to sell tap water in bottles? Oh yes, they did: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/... [bbc.co.uk]

    I wonder if this means the 'premium' brands such as Evian, or Buxton Spring or whomever are actually okay?

    • Almost all bottled water comes from the same source as public tap water.

    • I wonder if this means the 'premium' brands such as Evian, or Buxton Spring or whomever are actually okay?

      Even expensive brands contained plastic. (although expensive brands probably use higher quality plastics...)

      Whether these microplastics that we consume cause any problems health-wise is unproven. So, it might not be harming us at all- might be perfectly safe... or it might be giving us all autism and peanut allergies or some other weird 21st Century disease that everyone gets these days. I guess we'll find out when we're much too old to worry about it anymore...

  • So the takeaway is that all potable water contains microplastics. But some sources contain more than others - while the distributions of size and type are broad.

    But add to that all the other sources of microplastics: washing clothes, vacuuming carpets, all the plastic items that surround us, rubber tyres, paints and it is reasonable to ask: does one more source really make much difference? Is it worth getting upset about?

  • by DontBeAMoran ( 4843879 ) on Friday March 16, 2018 @10:05AM (#56269183)

    Microplastics found in 93% of bottled water tested in global study

    Report from CBC.ca

    His team tested 259 bottles of water purchased in nine countries (none were bought in Canada).

    So it's a test done in Canada, reported by CBC, about bottled water from countries other than Canada. Well that doesn't tell me anything about bottled water sold in Canada now, does it?

  • If it's in the water, how much is in things like soda and fruit juices? I've always thought milk in plastic bottles tastes very plasticy. I only buy waxed paper cartons because of this. So the real question to me is how much have I already consumed?
    To those who think "We just don't know if it's harmful." You are just thinking chemically. By their very presence these microscopic pieces of plastic can mechanically get in the way. They can clog a vital spot, say the entrance to a lioposom

    • by judoguy ( 534886 )

      If it's in the water, how much is in things like soda and fruit juices? I've always thought milk in plastic bottles tastes very plasticy. I only buy waxed paper cartons because of this. So the real question to me is how much have I already consumed?

      I doubt you have waxed paper cartons. That was the standard when I was a kid in the 50's. We'd get huge blocks of paraffin from the local dairy to melt and play with. Although, come to think of it, paraffin is "plastic" [wikipedia.org].

      So, unless your milk come in beeswax covered paper, you're still getting plastic.

  • Now, did anyone bother to find out if such microplastics in the water posed some sort of... problem?

    You know, health wise?

    Because the article just pointed out these microplastics are in our tap water too. Should we also be worried about that?
    • actually, don't worry about that. Since everything we buy is packaged in that stuff let's first see the content of all the food and drink and medicine we consume. probably the same story since, you know, the stuff has been used globally for decades

  • Obviously, since the water tastes like plastic, there must be plastic in the water.

  • Even BPA free plastics still contain estrogen like compounds:

    Most Plastics leach hormone like chemicals [npr.org] original study link is broken.

    Setting this aside we'd still have to deal with the estrogens from birth control pills that are in the water but this can't help.

  • When they include more spring-sourced waters, like Poland Spring, I'll be interested. No, I don't buy those exclusively, but surprise, I can name at least two cities in the US that receive spring-sourced water from their public utilities, and it is in fact better than most bottled water, right out of the tap. And I miss that water.

  • Most plastics are chemically inert, they don't form tiny sharp needles like asbestos and the quantities are ridiculously small anyways.

    So what is going to happen besides, well, shitting tiny plastic particles.

  • Friday, March 09, 2018
    Microplastics found in 73 percent of fish in the Northwest Atlantic, according to latest research

    https://www.naturalnews.com/2018-03-09-microplastics-found-in-73-of-fish-in-the-northwest-atlantic-according.html

  • Perhaps these particles are the result of the bottle manufacturing and are already inside the empty bottle before the water is added? Certainly they're not manufactured in a cleanroom so there must be some amount of plastic dust in the air that will find its way inside bottles.
  • This is just to move the attention away from what is in tap water.

    Nothing that can't be solved with a second helping of 30% of your income.
  • Plastics are inert and just pass through your system. I'll bet there are other non-plastic things found in bottled water that would be far worse for you. But everything is there in such small quantities, drink on.

    • I'm curious what reason you have to believe that plastic is inert.

      • Because billions of people drink bottled water, most of which apparently has plastic particles in it. DIdn't you read the headline? Sheesh.

    • They most certainly aren't inert.

      Plastics used in food packaging are generally pretty inert, though.
      Also, a lot of its non-reactivity has to do with the length of the polymers. Break down plastic, and it's far more reactive, unsurprisingly, as it's generally linked hydrocarbons.
  • I'd be interested in seeing the actual study, with controls, since 'm guessing that the plastic micropipet tips they used to transfer water and dyes likely added some microplastics as well.
  • ...if 100 micron bits of plastic are getting through the filters, there could be a slew of microbes, grit, and other impurities. Don't they filter this stuff at all?

    I'm just going to drink from the backyard hose, the way God and The Beaver intended.

  • 100 micron is pretty big (about the size of table salt crystals). It might be hard to see, but it is trivial to filter.

    I filter every drop of water entering my house with a 30 micron sediment [amazon.com] filter.

    I additionally filter my drinking water with an inexpensive 5 micron carbon [amazon.com] filter followed by a more expensive 0.001 micron reverse osmosis [amazon.com] filter.

    Heck, I even filter the air circulating in my house with a 3 micron furnace [amazon.com] filter.

He: Let's end it all, bequeathin' our brains to science. She: What?!? Science got enough trouble with their OWN brains. -- Walt Kelly

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