Every time we wash our clothes, we are putting plastic in the ocean.
There is a lot of attention paid to the impact of plastic waste on marine life, because micro-plastic disrupts life at the very bottom of the food chain.
60% of the world's clothes are made synthetically from petrochemicals such as polyester, nylon and acrylic. They contain tiny plastic strands less than fifth the width of a human hair called microfibres.
When you wash your clothes, microfibres come off into the water. Polyester dominates textile production. Synthetic clothing releases tiny plastic fibres when they’re washed.
Wastewater treatment plants filter out around 60% of the microfibres. But the rest travel into rivers and ocean, where they're eaten by fish and enter our food chain.
Around half a million tonnes of plastic microfibres from clothing end up in the ocean every year.
That's equivalent to more than 50 billion plastic bottles. In order to avoid polluting the ocean:
In order to create a large scale impact, the fashion industry must change.
Scientists are designing fabrics that shed fewer microfibres and campaigners want washing machine to come with better filters.
Making effective micro-plastic filtration standard technology in all new washing machines is the only way to bring about a meaningful reduction in this kind of plastic pollution.
Until this will be the standard you can apply findings of a research. It was found that cold, quick wash cycles can help to reduce the plastic footprint.