Addressing the Textile Microplastics Challenge

Addressing the Textile Microplastics Challenge
Start/End date
Event type
United Kingdom
Hong Kong, Online
Key Area

The hybrid event Addressing the Textile Microplastics Challenge on 16 November at 8:00 CET introduces ongoing developments and plans concerning the  evaluation of microplastic shedding.

Many of our favourite garments are the source of significant microplastics in the ocean. It is estimated that between 0.2 and 0.5 million tonnes of microplastic fibres from textiles enter the marine environment each year (Ellen MacArthur Foundation, 2017; Eunomia, 2016). It is estimated that one laundry cycle with synthetic textiles can emit between 700.000 and 6 million microplastic fibres, representing up to 0.5 % of the product’s total mass (OECD, 2020; Ziajahromi et al., 2017).

In this way, the washing synthetic textiles may account for up to 35 % of total annual microplastic releases (OECD, 2020). To date, much of the attention has focused on the shedding, washing and disposal of synthetic textiles by consumers. However, this is only part of the picture and ignores microfiber leakage during the manufacturing and processing of these materials. So, how do we evaluate this further?

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