On The River worked with Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation on a worldwide microplastics study.
Microplastics are tiny pieces of plastic that can enter our waterways and become very dangerous. They act like a sponge concentrating toxins which animals - like humans - ingest. These toxic microplastics bioaccumulate, or increase in concentration, as animals eat prey that has built up levels of these plastic pieces. These plastics are in our water from laundering synthetic clothes, using certain beauty products, and from litter breaking down over time.
We collected 36 samples on the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers and are awaiting the results. We will be surprised if the samples don't have plastic, as we saw more and more plastic trash as we moved downstream:
Watch our Take 5 On The River video about microplastics and what it took to collect samples: