"Microplastics are found in the most remote places on land and in the ocean as
well as in our food. Now several studies around the world have confirmed they
are also present in the air we breathe.
In our research, published today, we investigated for the first time how
airborne microplastics behave in the atmosphere and whether they contribute to
a warming or cooling of Earth’s climate system.
Other types of airborne particles (aerosols) such as dust, sea spray and soot
either scatter or absorb sunlight, and as a consequence they cool or warm the
climate system. We found microplastics do both.
In this first study to link airborne microplastics and climate change, we
highlight just how widespread microplastic pollution is and the potential it
has to influence climate on a global scale.
The current concentration of microplastics in the atmosphere is low and they
have only a very small influence on global climate at this point. But given
projections for a doubling of plastic waste over coming decades, we expect
microplastics could have a larger impact on Earth’s climate system, unless we
take action to address plastic pollution."
*** Xanni ***
Chief Scientist, Xanadu
Partner, Glass Wings
Manager, Serious Cybernetics