Plastic Free Water Partnership Meeting: November 13, 2018

The Plastic Free Waters  Partnership welcomes you to join us for our next full partnership meeting on Tuesday, November 13, 2018.

Please RSVP here.

The meeting will take place at the U.S Environmental Protection Agency, Region 2, 290 Broadway, NY, NY 10007, room 27A. The meeting will feature a panel discussion on DESIGN, INNOVATION and CIRCULAR ECONOMY.The afternoon will be dedicated to workgroup breakout sessions. A full agenda is coming soon.

9:30- 10 – Pre-meeting networking and coffee
10-noon – Panel and updates
12:15-1:45 Workgroup breakout sessions
1:45- 2:15 Workgroup Announcements


Please RSVP to the meeting and specify if you are attending in person or remotely (by phone/computer; details for conferencing are below).

Microplastics Updates, October 2018


Consistent microplastic ingestion by deep-sea invertebrates over the last four decades (1976-2015), a study from the North East Atlantic 

Microplastics in the aquatic environment: evidence for or against adverse impacts and major knowledge gaps

Microplastic hotspots in the Snake and Lower Columbia rivers: a journey from the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to the Pacific Ocean 

Microplastics in the Arctic: a case study with sub-surface water and fish samples off Northeast Greenland 

Microplastic ingestion by riverine macro invertebrates

Ingested microplaslic as a two-way transporter for PBDEs in Talitrus saltator

How mosquitoes are spreading microplastics from the water into the air 

Microplastics found in 90% of table salt 

Is my washing to blame for the plastic problem? 

In the news 

As synthetic microfibers spread in water, solutions are blossoming 

Researchers show that South Africa has a microplastic problem 

Microplastics found deep in sand where turtles nest 

Commentary/Marine plastic pollution – a planetary environmental problem 

‘Alarming’ level of microplastics found in a major U.S. River 

Mosquitoes may be contaminating ecosystems with tiny bits of plastic 

In a first, microplastics found in human poop 

Microplastics find their way into your gut, a pilot study finds 

New Jersey is pushing one of the strictest plastic bans in the nation. But is it enough? 


The Ocean Cleanup System 001 


Marine Debris research federal funding Job opportunity 



Microplastics Updates: July, 2018


Current research trends on plastic pollution and ecological impacts on the soil ecosystem: a review 

Microplastics play a minor role in tetracycline sorption in the presence of dissolved organic matter 

Retention and characteristics of microplastics in natural zooplankton taxa from the East China Sea 

Microplastics in mussels sampled from coastal waters and supermarkets in the United Kingdom

Environmentally relevant microplastic exposure affects sediment-dwelling bivalves 

Marine microplastic debris: an emerging issue for food security, food safety and human health

First evidence of microplastic ingestion by fishes from the Amazon River estuary  

Microplastic risk assessment in surface waters: a case study in the Changjiang Estuary, China 

Retention of microplastics in a major secondary wastewater treatment plant in Vancouver, Canada

Abundance and size of microplastics in a coastal sea: comparison among bottom sediment beach sediment and surface water 

Microplastics pollution in different aquatic environments and biota: a review of recent studies 

Microplastics elutriation system: Part B: insight of the next generation 


Microplastics Expert Workshop Report 

The Flow of Trash Free Waters 

Microplastics Final Report – Adventure Scientists

Outreach Material 

Plastic Tides Infographic 

In the News 

Link discovered between microplastics in rivers and wastewater treatment plants 

Microplastic pollution found around the coast 

Microplastics project to record amount, location and origin of pollution in the oceans 

Other Plastics News

Starbucks will stop handing out plastic straws by 2020

Hyatt announces global effort to reduce single-use plastics

Looking to cut plastics pollution in the ocean? Start upstream 

Oceans and Human Impacts 

Some pollution isn’t plastic after all 

San Francisco may become latest city to end use of plastic straws 

Santa Barbara moves to ban plastic straws, styrofoam 

Miami Beach wants to expand its ban on plastic straws 

Brick Councilman: ban plastic straws in bars, restaurants 

The push to ban plastic straws 

Material formed from crab shells and trees could replace flexible plastic packaging 

Governor Murphy signs legislation banning smoking at public beaches and parks 

Microplastics Updates: June, 2018


Microplastic contents from mariculture and natural mussels 

Low levels of microplastics (MP) in wild mussels indicate that MP ingestion by humans is minimal compared to exposure via household fibers fallout during meal 

Accumulation of polystyrene microplastics in juvenile Eriocheir sinensis and oxidative stress effects in the liver 

Microplastic abundances in a mussel bed and ingestion by the ribbed marsh mussel Geukensia demissa 

Virgin microplastis are not causing imminent harm to fish after dietary exposure 

Plastic ingestion by Scyliorhinus canicula trawl captured in the North Sea 

Trophic transfer of microplastics and mixed contaminants in the marine food web and implications for human health 

Advancements and challenges of microplastic pollution in the aquatic environment: a review 

In the news

Microplsatics in our mussels: the sea is feeding human garbage back to us

Greenpeace finds PFAS and microplastics in the Antarctic 

Investigating options for reducing releases in the aquatic environment of microplastics emitted by products 

Plastic and other waste found in British mussels 

Sen. Kennedy leads passage of America’s first state law to stop clothing fiber pollution 

Cooperative work needed between textile and environmental scientists to solve microfiber pollution

Educational Materials

Adventure Scientists Microplastics Toolkit

Microplastics Toolbox 

3 Steps to reduce plastic and benefit your business 


Other Plastic News

World Environment Day: Seven countries leading the charge on plastics pollution 

E.U. proposes ban on some plastic items to reduce marine pollution 

Single-use plastics: new EU rules to reduce marine litter 

How I Sea: Straw-Free San Francisco

Working Group Updates from March 2018 Plastic Free Waters Meeting

Bag Group Update:

  • Policy: The bag group is exploring how to build up local efforts to support plastic bag policies, such as educational campaigns, reaching out to residents, businesses, and to elected officials.
  • Leading by example: The bag working group is exploring lessons learned from businesses that have already done away with plastic, such as Costco.
  • Strategy: The bag working group is investigating strategies for how to get people to break the habit of using plastic bags. This involves gaining an understanding of the best alternatives, identifying key stakeholders, and identifying promising communities, such as Nassau County, to outreach to.  The role of environmental clubs and school groups has been critical for passing legislation in previous cases. The bag group is investigating why policies stall or fail to be implemented, as part of this approach.

Bottle Group Update:

  • Disseminating educational materials : A major short term goal of the bottle working group is to increase access and usage of bottle refilling stations. The working group is planning activities for sharing information about plastics pollution and encouraging reusables. This includes social media posts, flyers, and other materials that will be shared with stakeholders– starting with schools.
  • Raising awareness and encouraging use of reusable bottles in schools: A major strategic focus will be to target younger people that share concern over plastics pollution, as younger generations are poised to successfully push for change. The working group is looking into how to best engage schools.
  • Developing a database of refilling stations:  The bottle working group is planning activities for building a database of refilling station  with mapping capabilities. This will make it easier for people to find and use refilling stations. ReeFill will continue to install and maintain stations. However, a database would assist PFW identify trends with respect to station locations, and gain a sense of how accessible they are to different public audiences. Ultimately this information could assist PFW push for more publicly accessible refilling stations.

To-Go Container Group Update:

  • Engaging NY Businesses: the to-go container working group has partnered with the Solid Waste Advisory Board to expand the use of reusable containers in local businesses in New York. This will also involve outreach to restaurant groups and chains.
  • Toolkit for Business Owners: the to-go container working group will develop a toolkit for businesses on standard operating procedures for reusable to-go containers. This toolkit would also include lists of containers for businesses to use and to list on their website.
  • Long Term Aims: The to-go container working group is also exploring how to work with the NY Department of Health on how to make standard operating procedures easier for businesses to comply with, and improve knowledge and understanding of compliance. At the same time, the working group is staying abreast of developments for 135 legislation to ban styrofoam.

Microplastic group

  • Defining Goals and Objectives: The microplastics working group is finalizing a set of goals and objectives to focus future work. These will be posted publicly on the PFW website soon. These goals emphasize the importance of identifying research priorities and gaps, supporting standardized methodologies for microplastics sampling and analysis, increasing public education efforts, and engaging both manufacturers and policy makers to develop solutions, and considering parties across the supply chain in working towards a circular economy. The working group is exploring options for public-health focused goals and activities.

Plastic Straw Group Update:

  • Strategy: The straw group is working to identify effective strategies to reduce plastic straw pollution. This includes exploring the roles of business alliances, in particular the impacts of getting all the restaurants and groups in a downtown area on board with the same straw policy, and the role of customer support.
  • Plastic Straw Upon Request Policies: the straw working group is discussing the possibility of starting a running list of straw campaigns, and having a database of the different kinds of plastics legislation that people can consult. This would allow people to easily locate local ordinances and other resolutions, especially those relevant to plastic straws.
  • Pros and cons of straw alternatives: The straw working group is building out pros and cons of the available straw alternatives, such as paper straws, aluminum straws, and the reusable straws such as stainless steel straws.

Join us for the PFWP Meeting on March 23, 2018

Plastics Free Waters Partnership NY/NJ Meeting –  Agenda

March 23, 2018 –  10:00 AM – 2:15 PM

US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 2              

290 Broadway, New York, NY 10007  Room 27A

Airport-like security: bring an ID, arrive early, allow 30 mins to gain entrance, and expect delays

BYO cup and lunch. This is a ZERO WASTE meeting!

Item Time Lead
Pre-meeting Networking

(BYO cup)

9:30 – 10:00
Opening Remarks 10:00- 10:10 Javier Laureano


Panel discussion EJ

with Q&A

5 min introduction by each panelist


Open forum

10:10 – 11:30



Ana Baptista (The New School)


-Javier Laureano (EPA2)

-Melissa Iachan (NYLPI)

-PS 15 K Students x 5 (Cafeteria Culture)

Break 11.30 – 11.45 PS 15 students display data and answer questions
Workgroup and Partner Updates:

            -Straws Ordinance -Christina Manto & Noah Chesnin (Wildlife Conservation Society)

-NYC DEP Trash Free Waters- Sara Lupson  

-Bags – Jordan Christensen (Citizens Campaign for the Environment)

-Policy – Sandra Meola (NY/NJ Baykeeper)

-NYC Polystyrene Ban Bill update – Melissa Iachan (NYLPI)

      -Steering & brief 6IMDC  – Debby Lee Cohen (Cafeteria Culture)

-Microplastics (TBC)

11:45 – 12:20 Workgroup Leads,

and Partners

Break 12:20- 12:30
Workgroup Sessions/working lunch (BYO):

Bags, Microplastics, Straws, Bottles,

To-go Boxes, Policy, Messaging/Website, Balloons, Steering

12:30 – 2:00 Workgroup Leads
Wrap up & Workgroup announcements 2 – 2:20 Workgroup Leads
    Optional after-meeting networking        2:45 – 4:00                    Barley Corn

23 Park Place

New York NY 10007