Our ocean and its aquatic life are facing one of its biggest challenges: microfibre and plastic pollution. Every time we do laundry, an average of 9 million microfibres are released. They are so tiny that our wastewater treatment plants cannot filter them and they end up in our oceans.
Microfibres (including plastic fibres) are one of the biggest contributors to marine pollution. They are harmful to aquatic life, absorbed by sea plants and fish, and in turn, could be absorbed by humans as we consume seafood.
Where are these microfibres and microplastics coming from?
Every time we wash our clothes, tiny fibres shed from our clothes and enter our waterways. Many clothes today are made of synthetic fibres, such as polyester and nylon which are plastic. Plastics do not degrade naturally and easily, hence contributing to the wider waste problem. Some research also indicates that natural fibres (cotton, hemp) don't breakdown as easily as commonly known, therefore plastic or non-plastic, these microfibres are potentially leading to increasing marine pollution.
How does a Cora Ball help?
Most washing machines do not have filters. The ones that do are only good at keeping keys and coins from clogging your pipes. A standard filter cannot do what needs to be done: catch fibres too small for the human eye to see AND allow water flow.
Cora Balls are inspired by nature. Coral does exactly what we need; it catches tiny things from flowing water. Using those same principles in the design of the Cora Ball, you can now just drop, or throw it into your washing machine and do your wash as usual. It is easy to use and easy to clean.
Cora Ball swooshes around in the laundry and just like coral, allows water to flow, while picking up those little pieces of microfibre and catching them in her stalks. Independent tests investigating the effectiveness of the Cora Ball out of Dr. Chelsea Rochman’s lab at the University of Toronto (McIlwraith 2019) and University of Plymouth (Napper 2020) showed the Cora Ball prevents 26% and 31% of microfibres from flowing down the drain respectively. Furthermore, in Napper 2020, the researcher’s determined that the Cora Ball helped reduce overall shedding in addition to collecting microfibre that is being shed.
One small step and we can be making huge changes for our ocean.