Pioneer Press • Your fleece jacket might be polluting the Mississippi River – and your beer

Over the past decade, environmentalists have worried about the effect of microbeads, those tiny bits of plastic in facial scrubs that wash down the drain into rivers and lakes. But it turns out a bigger threat might be our clothing.

Friends of the Mississippi River and the National Park Service issued their second “State of the River” report earlier this fall and since then have hosted presentations across the state, with one coming up Friday at the McKnight Foundation in Minneapolis. The report delivers good news, including a drop in phosphorus, as well as bad news, such as a rise in road salt and nitrates from agricultural runoff.

The most talked about finding, however, may be the tiny bits of plastic showing up in water samples, as well as in fish and mussels. The vast majority are fibers from polyester fleece or nylon fabrics.

Source: by Maja Beckstrom, Pioneer Press