Microplastics, plastics smaller than 5mm, are an emerging environmental issue that scientists are surveying to understand how they impact waters and wildlife world-wide. Often these plastics come from our wastewater treatment plants, which aren’t equipped to filter such small plastics. Microplastics also form when larger plastics degrade. Since 2016, HRP has partnered with Brooklyn College to research the concentration of microplastics in Park waters and support regional efforts to understand this emerging threat. 

In 2018, the Estuary Lab found an average concentration of 830,762 microplastics per km² in Hudson River Park’s 400-acre Estuarine Sanctuary. This estimate indicates that since 2017, the concentration of microplastics found in the Estuarine Sanctuary increased by about 6x.

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2019 Summary 2019 Data
2018 Summary 2018 Data
2017 Summary 2017 Data
2016 Summary2016 Project Poster 2016 Data