Ever known that we were polluting our planet just by doing laundry?
PlanetCare is led by a passionate team concerned about the impact of plastic microfibers on our environment. They believe that we all have the power to make a real difference in protecting our
planet and stopping microplastic pollution. Their innovative microfibre filters promise to do
exactly that—by capturing up to 90% of the plastic fibers released from synthetic clothes when we wash them.
Founder and CEO Mojca Zupan, with co-founders Chief Science Officer Dr. Andrej Kržan and Chief Product Officer Dr. Miha Vrhovec have dedicated their careers to sustainability issues of plastics, striving to use scientific evidence to create meaningful impact. Together with the rest of the PlanetCare team, they invented a revolutionary filtering solution that will help reduce plastic pollution and keep our planet safe.
This article will delve into the science behind their microfibre filters to understand how they work and what impact they can have. From reducing plastic pollution in our oceans to protecting our health, PlanetCares mission is a powerful example of how we can all make a positive difference for our planet and our health.
What is Microfibers Pollution and Why is It Bad?
Microfibers are incredibly small plastic fibers that come from synthetic clothing, such as polyester and nylon. Knowing that today 60% of textiles is of synthetic or mixed-fibres origins, every time we do our laundry, hundreds of thousands of these tiny fibers escape into the wastewater and eventually end up in our oceans, rivers, and lakes. This is one of the leading sources of microplastic pollution in our oceans, with an estimated 700,000 plastic particles released from our clothes every time we do laundry. To picture it more easily – an average household dumps one plastic bag of microfibres per week into the ocean, just by doing laundry!
These microfibers can have serious negative impacts on the environment and human health. At such a small size, they can travel far and wide in the environment, entering our waterways and oceans where they can be easily confused for plankton and thus ingested by sea life. Marine animals can suffer from the accumulation of toxins, dirt and bacteria in their bodies, which can ultimately - through the food chain - cause harm also to humans.
PlanetCare Filters and How They Work
PlanetCare microfibre filters work by trapping these tiny plastic fibers from the washing machine before they have a chance to make it into our wastewater. The filters are installed to the water outlet hose of the washing machine and act like a sieve. This means that 90% less microplastics is entering our environment and contaminating our water sources.
The filters are designed to not just be effective, but also simple and easy to use. They do not require any additional electricity or water, and can easily fit into almost any existing washing machine setup. After aproximately 20 washes the dirty cartridges need to be replaced with new ones. Also this process is very simple and requires a minimum time effort.
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PlanetCare Independent Tests
Since the very first day, PlanetCare team has been driven by its commitment to providing efficient, practical and affordable solutions that will allow every household to stop sending microfibres into the environment.
They have had the filters tested for their fibre retention ability by internal procedures as well as by independent third parties. In all cases rigorous scientific procedures were used. An important part of this strategy was to employ independent, scientific, state-of-the-art testing all along the way. Results from these tests (and many, many internal tests including constant use in their own homes) have helped them to develop a market leading product that is now offered as a world innovation and comes with an efficiency guarantee.
The Closed Loop
At PlanetCare, sustainability is at their core and they make sure that the filters don't end up as waste. They offer a return-and-reuse service for their cartridges to make sure microfibers are never polluting rivers and oceans. After users send back their used cartridges, they take them apart in a controlled environment and remove the filtering medium with the fibers.
All cartridges are refurbished – 95% is cleaned, fitted with a new medium and sent back to customers. 5% - the caught fibres – is collected for recycling and stored safely until they have enough to reuse/recycle. The current plan is to convert them into insulation mats, although they are always looking for better solutions than incineration or landfilling. Every step they take is to make sure that neither their filters nor the microfibres caught ever become waste.
The goal? Less Plastic, Less Waste
The goal is to reduce the amount of plastic microfibres generated from laundry and ensure that all microfibers are collected and properly taken care of. PlanetCare takes pride in providing a fully circular, closed-loop solution for their filters, so they can make sure that nothing is polluting our environment. The cartridges are refurbished and the casing is washed and reused. The filtering medium is collected for recycling. PlanetCare wants to make sure that we remain sustainable and eco-friendly, so every measure they take is for the benefit of our planet.
We hope that you can join us on this journey and help us make a cleaner, greener future! Together, we can all do our part to eliminate waste and pollution from our environment. Here is how you can prevent the microfibre pollution:
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