Meaning of microplastic in English:


Pronunciation /ˈmʌɪkrəʊplastɪk/


(also microplastics)
mass noun
  • Extremely small pieces of plastic debris in the environment resulting from the disposal and breakdown of consumer products and industrial waste.

    ‘we dump huge amounts of plastic waste into the ocean every year, much of it ending up as microplastic’
    • ‘studies reported microplastics inside fish in the English Channel and harbour seals in the Netherlands’
    • ‘microplastic pollution is a strain to lake and river ecosystems’
    • ‘Over time plastic debris eventually fragments into tiny particles creating 'plastic plankton' or 'microplastic,' which is a serious long-term concern, particularly for marine food webs.’
    • ‘He said a single product could contain hundreds of thousands of microplastic particles that would likely persist for decades and be ingested by a vast range of organisms.’
    • ‘Most studies of ocean microplastic focus on the debris that floats at the sea surface, but this leaves other potential collections of plastic unaccounted for.’
    • ‘"Microplastic is now a ubiquitous contaminant in the Pacific Ocean - and seas around the world," said Eriksen.’
    • ‘"The environment is getting hammered by all sorts of stressors and any effort to reduce microplastics is a good thing."’
    • ‘"We have seen the microplastics in the guts of worms but we haven't actually yet tested whether or not that is getting further into the food chain," she said.’
    • ‘Microplastics have been discovered widely distributed across the bottom of the St. Lawrence River, the first time such pollutants have been found in freshwater sediments.’
    • ‘Fishing lines which contain plastic such as nylon can take up to 600 years to decompose, and during degradation become microparticles or microplastics.’
    • ‘They have turned their recent research into microplastics in the Great Lakes into a platform for advocacy, pressuring companies to stop using the plastic beads altogether.’