This can have both direct ecological effects and implications for agricultural sustainability and food safety, experts warn.
As much as 1,000 tons of plastic dust rains down on national parks and remote areas of wilderness in the US.
There are plenty of microplastics in the oceans, yet just how much of the stuff is out there may well come as a shock.
Birds that inhabit river banks swallow tiny bits of plastic debris at a rate of hundreds a day.
Currents near the bottom of the ocean play a major part in the way microplastics drift down to the seafloor.
We need to ensure we won't be adding much more plastic waste to the vast amounts out there.