"From plastic waste to low-cost carbon nanoreactors for use in monitoring environmental pollutants and nanoplastics”


This project involves research on nanoplastic and microplastic waste from Nairobi and the western Indian Ocean region in Kenya. Plastic pollution is a nuisance not only for urban areas but also for coastal communities as it negatively affects the economic development of coastal cities. With the rise in the COVID-19 pandemic, plastics (single-use masks and hand sanitiser bottles) have increased plastic waste generation. These plastics readily degrade into microplastics and nanoplastics which can be ingested by marine organisms and affect their physiological functions. The microplastics and nanoplastics can also be transferred to the soil as well as to the human body further causing health and environmental issues. This calls for a need to reduce plastic pollution by focusing on nanoplastics and microplastics. The work will involve determining the distribution and abundance of nanoplastic and microplastic waste as well as the composition and characterization of the nanoplastic and microplastic waste using a wide-range of analytical techniques.


The Africa Academy of Sciences

Principal Investigator
Dr. Bridget Mutuma
Project Status