Posts tagged with

microplastics

Public Comment Open on a Draft Federal Report on Microfiber Pollution

Posted Thu, 09/15/2022 - 11:00

On behalf of the Interagency Marine Debris Coordinating Committee, NOAA’s Marine Debris Program and EPA’s Trash Free Waters Program are pleased to share a draft Report on Microfiber Pollution, which is now available for public comment. Required by law, this report will provide Congress with an overview of the microfiber pollution issue, while also outlining a path forward for federal agencies, in partnership with other stakeholders, to address this problem. We invite comments, feedback, and recommendations on the draft Report on Microfiber Pollution, including Section 7, which contains a plan that outlines opportunities to reduce microfiber pollution.

Microplastics for Dinner? A Story About Picky Eaters

Posted Thu, 05/19/2022 - 11:00

Plastic particles less than 5mm in size, known as microplastics, are found everywhere that scientists have looked, including in the coastal waters of New England. The eastern oyster is an important commercial aquaculture species that has been shown to eat microplastics. In partnership with the NOAA Marine Debris Program, marine scientists at the University of Connecticut sampled oysters in the field and performed a series of selection experiments in the laboratory to determine what types of microplastics oysters prefer to eat or reject and how that relates to what is in the natural environment.

Using Citizen Science to Understand Marine Debris

Posted Thu, 04/08/2021 - 11:00

Spring is here! As the temperatures increase and weather improves, many of us are drawn to the outdoors. But what if your trip to the beach could be more than just an enjoyable day? What if you could do scientific research at the same time as a citizen scientist? Opportunities for the public most often come in the form of data collection, but they can also include providing input on questions to investigate, participating in study design, or interpreting and sharing results. Several projects funded through the NOAA Marine Debris Program have tapped into this community resource as well, and committed stewards around the country have contributed invaluable data to monitoring and research projects that support our vision of a sea free of debris.

The Mystery of How Long Until It’s Gone

Posted Tue, 09/01/2020 - 11:00

Huge amounts of marine debris enter the ocean and Great Lakes every year, from large abandoned and derelict vessels and fishing gear, to plastic bottles, food wrappers, and other trash, and even tiny pieces of plastic that you can’t see with the human eye! But once our trash is in the ocean, what happens to it? How long does it last, and can we ever say that it’s gone?

Bite Size Plastic: How Marine Wildlife Snack on Our Trash

Posted Mon, 06/22/2020 - 10:39

Millions of tons of debris enter the marine environment each year, including our trash and damaged fishing gear, and can be found at the surface of the water, down to the deepest parts of the ocean. Many marine debris items, especially plastics, are small enough to be ingested, or eaten, by wildlife, an issue of growing concern for the health of hundreds of marine animals. Animals may directly eat marine debris, or it may be consumed with prey that already has a belly full of marine debris.

What Do You Know About Talking Trash?

Posted Wed, 06/10/2020 - 09:50

People all over the world are concerned about marine debris and they would like to know more about it. The NOAA Marine Debris Program’s Communications Team responds to those questions we receive through email, and we’ve seen a trend. Following the National Ocean Services theme of Ocean Trivia for this week, we have created our own marine debris “trivia questions” that we hope you enjoy!

How Microplastics Travel in the Southern California Bight jennifer.simms Fri, 04/10/2020 - 12:06

Although plastic pollution is not a new phenomenon, concerns over the environmental and human health implications of microplastics, or plastic pieces less than 5 mm in size, has grown rapidly over the past decade. These concerns stem from their potential to be ingested by wildlife, accumulate in animal bodies, and transfer contaminants up the food chain, as well as their widespread presence in the environment.

Understanding the Movement of Microplastics in River Plumes jennifer.simms Fri, 04/10/2020 - 11:31

Microplastics in the ocean are a growing concern to both the scientific community and to the public at large. Much of the attention is focused on the garbage patches that can be found in oceanic gyres and  are thousands of miles from their largely urban sources. However, the amount of microplastics is often significantly higher in urban waterways than in these remote garbage patches.

Blue Crab Babies and Microplastics

Posted Fri, 04/03/2020 - 09:19

Microplastics, or plastic pieces smaller than 5mm in size, are commonly found in our ocean and coastal waters. Do the microplastics that these larval crabs encounter while drifting in the ocean affect their survival and ability to return to estuaries? With support from a NOAA Marine Debris Program Research grant, a team of University of Delaware marine scientists have joined forces to study this question.