Over the last century, accumulation of microplastic has emerged as a greater threat to the environment, plants, microorganisms and even human beings. Microplastics can be intentionally produced for industries such as cosmetics, or they may be unintentionally generated from degradation of bulk plastic debris. Furthermore, mismanagement of plastic waste is a major source of microplastics. When ingested, microplastics can alter several physical, chemical and biological processes in living organisms. Thus, their toxicity silently spreads its roots into the biosphere. Unfortunately, current strategies for the elimination of microplastics are not sufficient for their complete removal and degradation. Therefore, the adoption of green innovative technologies is the first step toward a microplastic-free environment. However, advances for its effective degradation and elimination are hindered by our limited understanding. This literature study investigates microplastic comprehensively, covering their sources, fate, ecological impacts and their effects on biological processes. It includes an analysis of microplastics in Indian rivers, explores methods for its eradication and degradation, emphasizes plastic recycling and offers future recommendations to pave way toward achieving a microplastic-free environment. Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.]
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