Tahoe in the News

Lake Tahoe has higher concentration of microplastics than ocean trash heap

Cari Spencer | LA Times
July 14, 2023

Sparkling Lake Tahoe may appear pristine, but its blue surface waters contain microplastic concentrations higher than those observed in ocean gyres — systems of ocean currents notorious for accumulating plastic waste — according to new research.

The study, published Wednesday in the scientific journal Nature, revealed that of the 38 lakes and reservoirs sampled across 23 countries, Lake Tahoe contained the third-highest concentration of microplastics.

Researchers first reported microplastics in Lake Tahoe in 2019 — a disappointing discovery about the lake, which straddles California and Nevada. Decades of conservation efforts and legal protections have worked to preserve the lake and its 72 miles of shoreline.

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