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Cayla Cook

Microplastics Create Mega Questions

Event Type
Illinois Sustainable Technology Center
Feb 24, 2022   12:00 - 1:00 pm  
Cayla Cook - Principal Engineer and Contaminant Expert at Hazen and Sawyer
Register for this webinar via Zoom
Elizabeth Meschewski

Abstract: Within the water industry specifically, three major questions are present that may determine the future of how microplastics are approached:

  1. How many nanoplastics are present in finished water?
  2. How will micro-and nanoplastics change how we view water and wastewater treatment technologies?
  3. Are micro-and nanoplastics toxic?

While micro-and nanoplastic contamination is well understood to occur in every environmental compartment, human blood, and even rainfall, the minimum detection limit, e.g. 1 µm, poses significant challenges for truly understanding the occurrence and fate of microplastics in the water industry. It is no secret that polymeric materials are ubiquitous to water and wastewater treatment, storage, and distribution. Like many constituents of emerging concern, the question of toxicity is an important question that we will need to answer.

Biography: Cayla is an expert on microplastic contamination in water and wastewater with more than 7 years of experience studying the intersection of polymer science and water resources. Her consulting experience includes extensive water quality analysis, process design, process analysis, and operations manuals for both water and wastewater treatment facilities.

This webinar is a certified green event by the University of Illinois' University of Illinois' Institute for Sustainability, Energy, and Environment.

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