With increasing public and regulatory concern regarding microplastics in the environment, research is becoming more prevalent. Currently, there is limited knowledge of the fate and transport of microplastics, which limits the ability to perform environmental risk assessments for these substances. To tackle these important questions, Cefic-LRI awarded two research grants to European universities.
From Stockholm University, Professor Matthew MacLeod was awarded 220 000 € to investigate the fate and transport of microplastics in aquatic systems. Entitled Nano2Plast, this project will help predict environmental concentrations and distributions of microplastics between different environmental compartments and provide evidence-based research to inform microplastic risk assessment.
Professor Bart Koelmans, from Wageningen University, was awarded 400 000 € to investigate the effects of microplastics on aquatic species. Project METAS will provide guidance on rational testing methods for microplastic particles, study effect thresholds for aquatic organisms, and provide guidance for the environmental hazard and risk assessment of microplastics.
Both projects were officially kicked off at the beginning of March.
Since its foundation in 1996, the LRI programme has funded more than 200 research projects, mostly in Europe, on consumer exposure, human biomonitoring, endocrine disruption, reproductive health, respiratory toxicity, eco-relevance, testing strategies and risk assessment, persistence, bioaccumulation and toxicity. Read more here.