CONTACT: Jennifer Kowalczyk


PHONE: (518) 563-9770 ext 127


Plattsburgh, NY – 03/30/2016 – Microplastics may be small, but they?re causing big problems for our environment and our health. These tiny pieces of plastic used in personal care products are designed to go down the drain and into our lakes, rivers, and oceans ? by the billions every day. They absorb toxins in the water, are eaten by marine life, and can make their way up the food chain all the way to our dinner plates. Mountain Lake PBS will host a community forum on the effects of microplastics and other pollutants in our waterways on April 11 at 6pm.

Beginning in mid-2017, these tiny plastic beads will be prohibited. The ban, which New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand introduced in Congress, and President Obama signed into law in December, is aimed at the billions of “microbeads” that researchers say are being washed down drains every day, slipping through sewage treatment plants and ending up polluting our waterways, where they threaten fish and other aquatic life.

Researchers are trying to determine the extent of that threat.ÿ A $71,000 grant will help SUNY Plattsburgh philosophy and environmental science classes study the problems caused by microplastics in Lake Champlain.ÿ Students will investigate the effects, and effective ways to address the threat, as well as identifying ways to increase public awareness.

Mountain Lake PBS invites the community to the Mountain Lake PBS studio in Plattsburgh for a public forum on Monday, April 11 at 6pm, to discuss pollutants threatening our waterways. The public is invited ask questions and submit comments either in the live studio audience, or by participating and watching the live stream online. Questions and comments can be submitted in advance at

Dr. Danielle Garneau from, associate professor from the Center for Earth and Environmental Science at SUNY Plattsburgh, Bill Howland, Director of the Lake Champlain Basin Program, and Mike Winslow, a staff scientist with the Lake Champlain Committee will join us for a panel discussion on the harmful effects of these particles, and other pollution threats to Lake Champlain.

Thom Hallock, host of the award-winning Mountain Lake Journal, will moderate the panel. The 60-minute forum will air as a special edition of Mountain Lake Journal on Friday, April 15 at 8pm.

The forum is free to attend, and open to the public. To attend, please email

Learn more about the program at .


About Mountain Lake PBS

Mountain Lake PBS produces high quality programs for local and worldwide audiences, reaching over 3.9 million viewers in New York, Vermont, Quebec and Ontario. The station also provides a host of education and outreach services for learners of all ages and devotes at least eight hours a day to programming for children.

Mountain Lake PBS’ mission is to inspire and enrich people and communities through meaningful storytelling, entertainment, education and public engagement.