It’s raining plastic in the Rocky Mountains | 8/14/2019 | Eleanor Imster
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Image via Flickr/tinyfroglet.

In a new study, researchers from the United States Geological Survey (USGS) discovered multicolored microplastic shards, beads and fibers in more than 90 percent of rainwater samples taken from across Colorado, including samples from locations more than two miles (3,000 meters) high in Rocky Mountain National Park.

Microplastics - Pieces - Plastic - Environment - Microplastics

Microplastics are very small pieces of plastic that pollute the environment. Microplastics aren’t a specific kind of plastic, but rather any type of plastic fragment that is less than 5 mm (.2 inches) in length.

Researcher chemist Gregory Weatherbee is lead author of the USGS study. He told The Guardian:

Result - Share - Public - Eye - Rain

I think the most important result that we can share with the American public is that there’s more plastic out there than meets the eye. It’s in the rain, it’s in the snow. It’s a part of our environment now.

They believe garbage dumped in the environment is the main source of microplastics, as well as plastic fibers released from synthetic clothes.

Rainwater - Samples - Colorado - Microscope - Rainbow

Rainwater samples collected across Colorado and analyzed under a microscope contained a rainbow of plastic fibers. Image via USGS.

The researchers, who were studying nitrogen pollution at the time,...
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