Noel Lange

Student: Auburn High School

For the past three years, I have been researching household microplastic fibers in hopes of reducing the amount of microplastics that are released into the aquatic environment. The International Union for Conservation of Nature estimates that about 35% of all microplastics currently in the world’s oceans are produced by washing synthetic clothing, so I have been focusing primarily on microplastics released during the household laundry process.

Tell us what the water concern in your country is!

In the United States, there are several water concerns. Many parts of the US struggle with water shortages and water rights. There is also a deterioration of infrastructure such as wastewater and water treatment plants. Microplastics and other emerging contaminants are also prevalent in the US.

From where comes your interest in water?

Both of my parents are civil engineers. I grew up hearing about water related problems. When I started getting involved in scientific research, I knew that I wanted to focus on solving some of these problems.

This is what I think is one of the solutions for a sustainable future:

People need to become more aware of how they use water. The average American citizen uses over 100 gallons of water each day. Many people are not aware that anything they dump down the sink can end up in the environment or that washing synthetic clothing can create plastic pollution.

CONTACT WATERTANK

Ania Andersch

Programme manager ania.andersch@siwi.org +46 8 121 360 59