Plastic, friend or foe?

View of colorful microplastics beads on top of white surfaceASU Center for Biodiversity Outcomes Faculty Affiliate Rolf Halden’s work on microplastics pollution in oceans was recently featured in an ASU Now article titled “Pervasive polymers of the deep blue sea.” Halden and his team determined the concentration of microplastics, broken down pieces of plastic products, in various depths of the ocean. They discovered the most concentrated plastic was found between 600 and 2,000 feet below the water’s surface and mostly consisted of plastic resistant to further breakdown. Halden states, “This study has made it clear that the issue [of microplastics in our waterways] is far bigger than previously anticipated. It is imperative that we take action.” Halden directs the ASU Biodesign Center for Environmental Health Engineering and is a professor at the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment.