World Newsletter

23 August 2019

The World Health Organization says the levels of microplastics in drinking water dont appear to be risky, but that research has been spotty and more is needed into their effects on the environment and health. 

Micro-plastics are created when man-made materials break down into tiny particles smaller than about 5 millimeters, although there is no strict scientific definition. In a report published on Wednesday, the UN health agency said the minuscule plastics are ubiquitous in the environment and have been found in drinking water, including both tap and bottled, most likely as the result of treatment and distribution systems. 

But just because were ingesting them doesnt mean we have a risk to human health,said Bruce Gordon, WHOs coordinator of water, sanitation and hygiene. 

The main conclusion is, I think, if you are a consumer drinking bottled 
water or tap water, you shouldnt necessarily be concerned.Gordon 
acknowledged, however, that the available data is weak and that more 
research is needed. 

He also urged broader efforts to reduce plastic pollution. 

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