Taiwan Church News
January 7 – 13, 2019
Plastic Microbeads Surround Taiwan Island And Enter Into Our Food Chain
Reported By Chiu Kuo-rong
After more than six months’ investigation, planned and practiced by Kuroshio Ocean Education Foundation, a report of plastic microbeads floating in the waters around Taiwan is delivered on January 3rd. Microbead, with a diameter smaller than 5mm, is a plastic particle mainly used in cosmetics product, and they also could be caused or generated from a fracture due to long-time sunshine or direct impact on plastic products.
According to the report, the area where the plastic microbeads measured highest, with 64.12 parts per cubic meter, is at the estuary of Pa-Chan River in Chiayi County. In other words, it means there are about 135,000 microbeads found per every standard swimming pool.
The second highest microbeads, measured with 4.90 parts per cubic meter, is at the estuary of Hou-Jin River in Kaohsiung City; and the third spot, with 3.10 parts per cubic meter, is found at Peace Island of Keelung City.
As microbeads have been found massively infiltrated into our food chain around the globe and become a serious health problem to human kind, many countries like Japan and United States aware of this challenge had started to ban the application of these plastic microbeads through legislation since 2014.
Though Taiwan has banned the import and manufacture of microbeads in rinse-off cosmetics from 1 July 2018, Ms Chang Huei-jun, chief executive officer of Kuroshio Ocean Education Foundation, urged Taiwan society to notice the dangerous impacts of microbeads and take more actions to solve this catastrophic environmental problem.
Translated by Peter Wolfe