Sponging Up Plastic Pollution – Hakai Magazine

Microplastics in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed: Microplastics from the Rhode River are pictured at the laboratory of Dr. Lance Yonkos in the Department of Environmental Science & Technology at the University of Maryland in College Park, Md., on Feb. 6, 2015 (Photo by Will Parson/Chesapeake Bay Program CC BY-NC 2.0 DEED via Flickr).

For millennia, humans have used dried natural sponges to clean up, to paint, and as vessels to consume fluids like water or honey; we’ve even used them as contraceptive devices. Whether synthetic or natural, sponges are great at ensnaring tiny particles in their many pores. And as scientists around the world are beginning to show, sponges’ cavity-filled forms mean they could provide a solution to one of our era’s biggest scourges: microplastic pollution….