Stemming from the requirements outlined in California Senate Bill 1422, on June 16, 2020, the California State Water Resources Control Board (“Board”) adopted this groundbreaking definition of microplastics in drinking water:
‘Microplastics in Drinking Water’ are defined as solid polymeric materials to which chemical additives or other substances may have been added, which are particles which have at least three dimensions that are greater than 1nm and less than 5,000 micrometers (µm)3. Polymers that are derived in nature that have not been chemically modified (other than by hydrolysis) are excluded. - State Water Resources Control Board
While this is the first time microplastics in drinking water has been defined (not only in the United States but also internationally), it’s not a micro issue. A recent review of over 50 studies on plastic ingestion found that on average (globally) we could be ingesting approximately 5 grams of microplastic every week—the equivalent weight of a credit card—from the food we eat, air we breathe and water we drink. Another recent study found microplastics present in every human organ that was tested. While the health implications of microplastics are still unclear, microplastics can persist and accumulate in human tissues once ingested.
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