Microplastics, commonly found in our oceans, are less than 5 millimeters in length and are a hazard to marine life. Microplastics (and microbeads) have gotten a lot of publicity in recent years but did you know that microsynthetic fibers can be hazardous as well? Microsynthetic fibers are small plastic particles within the category of microplastics that are fibrous in shape. If your laundry is used to wash anything made from synthetic fibers like polyester, you are releasing microfibers down the drain—fibers that can make their way past treatment plants and into the water that animal and sea life consume.
If you install a special filter on your laundry water discharge hose, you can stop the non-biodegradable fibers from going down the drain. Does your property have such a filter?
I became aware of microsynthetic fibers while reading a press release from Wexco Environmental. They produce a filter called the Filtrol 160 for both homes and businesses. According to the company, the Filtrol 160 is the first washing machine filter capable of capturing microscopic fibers.
“Synthetic fibers do not break down in the environment just like other plastics,” says Wexco founder and President Brian Koski. “They tend to attract other pollutants like a sponge, making them very toxic when fish or wildlife mistake them for food.”
Click here to watch a video that explains the story of microfibers.