Understanding Microplastics with Dr. Danielle Garneau

By Jack Mercik, Office and Communications Coordinator

At Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, we take the health of our lake very seriously and are always striving to share the most up to date info on environmental threats which Lake Champlain may be facing including cyanobacteria, aquatic invasive species, and microplastics.

Over the past season we’ve trained and taught kids of all ages in our summer camps how to identify cyanobacteria and aquatic invasive species in the lake, and we have offered courses and talks for the public on lake threats and health. In addition, if you have been keeping up with our blog, public outreach, and the work on our dock systems in North Harbor, then you are no doubt aware that one of the biggest environmental threats facing Lake Champlain (and most other bodies of water) right now is microplastics.

These microscopic bits of plastic which come from plastic bags, boat hulls, dock flotation devices, and numerous other sources are being found in the lake in increasing quantities, and pose a serious threat to the health of our lake and all its denizens. With that in mind we here at the Museum believe it is very important that everyone have the chance to learn more about microplastics: what they are, where they come from, and (most importantly) what you can do about them.

To help us cover all of this we were lucky enough to get a chance to speak with Dr. Danielle Garneau, the Associate Professor for Environmental Science at SUNY Plattsburgh, who is an expert on microplastics in Lake Champlain. She gave a webinar on the topic hosted by the museum this summer and we are excited to make it available for all to watch right here and on Youtube:

This project has been funded wholly or in part by the United States Environmental Protection Agency under assistance agreement (LC – 00A006950) to NEIWPCC in partnership with the Lake Champlain Basin Program.