According to a study published in the journal Science, U.S. researchers collected 14 months of rain water and air samples and calculated that 11 protected areas in the western United States landed more than 1,000 tons of microplastic particles each year, equivalent to more than 120 million plastic bottles.
Janice Brahney, an environmental scientist at Utah State University and lead author of the paper, said the numbers were surprising, and they calculated that protected areas accounted for 6 percent of the total U.S. area.
Research confirms the terrible reality that microplastic particles are spreading around the world. They flow into the ocean through wastewater, penetrate deep-sea ecosystems and fall to land with the sea breeze. Today’s acid rain is plastic rain.