The mission of the Virginia Plastic Pollution Prevention Network (VPPPN) is to promote and facilitate coordination, collaboration, and communication among groups working to reduce plastic pollution throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. 

November 2023

Welcome to the Virginia Plastic Pollution Prevention Network (VPPPN).

In this edition:

  • Next Meeting is Tuesday, November 21 at 2 pm
  • Guest Speaker: Trey Sherard of Anacostia RiverKeeper
  • Plastic Nurdles Spilled in the Anacostia River
  • Reduce plastic tip of the month
  • Virginia Conservation Network Briefing Book: Our Common Agenda
  • Microplastics Found in Clouds
  • Microplastics in Tissues-audio file
  • Job announcement: Virginia Institute of Marine Science
  • Happy Thanksgiving!

November Virginia Plastic Pollution Prevention Network Meeting

The Virginia Plastic Pollution Prevention Network will have a meeting on Zoom on Tuesday, November 21, 2023 (2:00 to 3:30 p.m.) We will be joined by special guest speaker, Trey Sherard, of Anacostia Riverkeeper to share updates about the September train derailment that caused plastic nurdles to spill into the Anacostia River.

The meeting will be available on zoom:

Zoom Link

Spill of plastic pellets in Maryland reveals the polluting potential of ‘nurdles’

On Septmeber 23, a train derailed in Hyattsville, MD spilling plastic nurdles into the Northeast Branch of the Anacostia River. Plastic nurdle spills are rare in the Mid-Atlantic leaving local officials scrambling to develop a plan.

This accident highlights the impact of plastics for the entirety of their lifecycle and the need to have proactive plans in place to protect people and the environment.

Read article here

Reduce Plastic Tip of The Month

Use Long Lasting Cleaning Cloths

Avoid single use wet wipes from plastic containers.

Search the internet for ways to make your own using old fabric and a glass jar!


Virginia Conservation Network Briefing Book

Read the Virginia Conservation Network's Our Common Agenda: 2024 Policy Briefing Book. This book offers in-depth analysis of the conservation issues facing Virginia and highlights the priorities of more than 160 organizations across the state. There is a chapter about plastic pollution, and another one about the false "solution" of "Plastic to Fuels". 

Microplastics Found in Clouds Above Japanese Mountains


Microplastics have been found in the deepest ocean trenches and Antarctic ice.

Microplastic particles have now been found in Japan in the clouds above Mt. Fuji and Mt. Oyama, this new research highlights how plastic pollution can spread long distances, contaminating the planet’s crops and water via “plastic rainfall”.

Read article here

Microplastics in Tissues

(brief audio file highlighting this scientific discovery)

NSF-supported researchers at Duke University have found microplastics translocating into the soft tissues of whales and seals. Photo credit: Greg Merrill, Duke University Marine Lab

Credit: U.S. National Science Foundation

Listen Here

VIMS Job Announcement

Listing Details -
Position Title: Marine Scientist Senior - Nationwide Fishing Trap, Removal, Assessment, and Prevention (TRAP) Program
Organization Name: Virginia Institute of Marine Science, William & Mary
Department: The Center for Coastal Resources Management (CCRM)
Location: Gloucester Point, Virginia, USA
Open until filled
The Marine Scientist Senior will play a leading role in the high profile, nationwideTRAP Program focusing on derelict trap data collection, synthesis, and analysis to inform policy development.
The successful candidate will be expected to synthesize and analyze data collected through the TRAP program to advance the understanding on derelict trap causes, rates, distribution, and impacts in the United States to inform meaningful derelict fishing gear policies that reduce gear loss and mitigate harmful effects. The candidate will also be expected and supported in presenting and publishing the results of research at scientific conferences and in peer-reviewed journals.

The VPPPN monthly eNewsletter wants YOUR input! 

If you would like to have your upcoming event (or publication) mentioned in the monthly VPPPN eNewsletter, write a paragraph with the following information, and email it to

Are you reading a book about plastics, environmental justice, ocean sustainability and health or another related topic? What about a podcast series relevant to plastic pollution or marine debris? We want to know so we can share that information with other VPPPN members!

FORMAT: Submissions to the VPPPN monthly eNewsletter must be sent as a Word or Pages document or as text in an e-mail. Word limit: 150. You can also send us a photo, logo, or flyer as a JPG.

CONTENT: Include the title, time, date and place of the event or program, and a phone number (with area code) or e-mail address of a contact person. State if the program is free or has a fee; has an age requirement or other restrictions; or has a registration deadline or welcomes drop-ins. Also include the name of the group sponsoring the event, and a website (if available) for more information. 
Support the Virginia Plastic Pollution Prevention Network

As our network grows, so do our expenses. Please consider a donation to support the VPPPN if you have found it to be valuable to you. We would appreciate your support of $10, $20 or more. Member organizations that donate $100 or more will have the opportunity to add their logo and website link to our website.

Donations by credit card (Master Card and VISA) can be made using the link below. All donations to support the VPPPN are managed through our partner, Clean Virginia Waterways of Longwood University. THANK YOU! 

Support VPPPN

We are thankful for this group of like minded people working toward the similar goal of keeping plastics out of our water. Keep up the Great Work!