Recent Webinar | Beneath the Currents: Advancing the Understanding of Cotton and Synthetic Microfiber Impact

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This webinar explores the intersection of the earth’s natural cycles, cotton sustainability, and the impact of microfiber emissions on aquatic environments, leading into a focused examination of recent aquatic microfiber biodegradability research from NC State University.

The research investigates the biodegradability of cotton microfibers compared to tissue paper and commercially available wipes, both cellulose-based and polypropylene-based, in various aquatic settings including wastewater treatment plant, seawater, and lakewater conditions.

The findings reveal that cotton and other cellulosic materials readily biodegrade under all conditions tested, in contrast to synthetic polypropylene, which shows minimal degradation. This research further underscores the environmental advantage of cotton fibers, which readily biodegrade, as opposed to synthetic fibers that persist in aquatic ecosystems.

Key Speakers:

  • Dr. Richard Venditti, Elis-Signe Olsson Professor of Pulp and Paper Science and Engineering at NCSU
  • Steven Pires, Associate Director of Sustainability at Cotton Incorporated