Researchers from UC Riverside discovered that graphene oxide nanoparticles are very mobile in lakes or streams - which means that they can cause negative environmental and health impacts. It turns out that in surface waters (where there is more organic material and less hardness), GO particles remain stable. But in groundwater, they tend to become less stable.
The researchers say that it is important to continue and study what happens when graphene materials get into the ground or water. They say that their lab is one of the few labs in the US that studies the environmental impact of graphene oxide.
Last year, Sweden's Department of Energy and Environment studied the available information on graphene, and came up with the conclusion that the new material may have potentially adverse environmental and health risks. In 2012, Researchers from the University of Edinburgh said that graphene nanoplatelets could post health risks as they can accumulate in the lungs and cause damage.