Distribution and quantity of microplastic on sandy beaches along the northern coast of Taiwan

Alexander Kunz, Bruno Andreas Walther, Ludvig Löwemark, Yao Chang Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Plastic pollution is now ubiquitous in the world's oceans, and studies have shown macroplastic and microplastic pollution of beaches in several East Asian countries. However, to our knowledge, no study of microplastic pollution has been conducted in Taiwan yet. Therefore, we collected sand samples from four beaches along the northern coast of Taiwan in 2015 and extracted microplastic particles using a saturated NaCl solution. Microplastic particles were identified using synchrotron-based FTIR spectroscopy. We recovered 4 to 532 particles from eight 0.0125 m3 samples, with a total of 1097 particles weighing 0.771 g. A negative trend between the size of the particles and their numbers was documented. We thus established that microplastic pollution was ubiquitous along Taiwan's northern coast. Future research should more comprehensively sample beaches around the entirety of Taiwan's coast, and special emphasis should be placed on identifying different sources and movements of microplastic.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-135
Number of pages10
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Volume111
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 15 2016

Fingerprint

Beaches
beaches
Coastal zones
Taiwan
Pollution
beach
plastics
coasts
coast
pollution
Weighing
Synchrotrons
FTIR spectroscopy
Sand
Spectroscopy
Plastics
plastic
distribution
particle
East Asia

Keywords

  • Beach
  • FTIR spectroscopy
  • Microplastic
  • Pellet
  • Taiwan

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Pollution

Cite this

Distribution and quantity of microplastic on sandy beaches along the northern coast of Taiwan. / Kunz, Alexander; Walther, Bruno Andreas; Löwemark, Ludvig; Lee, Yao Chang.

In: Marine Pollution Bulletin, Vol. 111, No. 1-2, 15.10.2016, p. 126-135.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kunz, Alexander ; Walther, Bruno Andreas ; Löwemark, Ludvig ; Lee, Yao Chang. / Distribution and quantity of microplastic on sandy beaches along the northern coast of Taiwan. In: Marine Pollution Bulletin. 2016 ; Vol. 111, No. 1-2. pp. 126-135.
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