Searching for microplastics at the Underwater Gardens of La Selva

The project Searching for microplastics at the Underwater Gardens of la Selva! studies the sea bottom at the header of the underwater canyon of Blanes (Spain). The area covers a depth range of 30-70m deep.

The objective is the detection and analysis of microplastics (size inferior to 5mm). In order to evaluate its impact on the environment the following parameters will be taken into account: type, size, colour and density.

Cronicles of the sampling points:

Sample 1: point 233 (-37m)>> Sample 5: point 229 (-47m)>>
Sample 2: point 191 (-30m)>> Sample 6: point G1 (-51m)>>
Sample 3: point 182 (-43m)>> Sample 7: point 234 (-55m)>>
Sample 4: point 156 (-40m)>> Sample 8: point 18 (-52m)>>

Location of sampling points on a bionomic map produced by S'Agulla. Extension of the study area: 16km2.


Preliminary resultats of sample 2 point 191 (-30m)>> 

Overall microplastics found are of secondary type, that is, its origin is from the fragmentation of larger plastics. They have been classified as: fibers, foam, silicone, films in different degrees of degradations, plastic fragments, remains of clothes and wipes. No predominance of any of these types has been found. The main colour is white.

The distribution found is that with depth there are les microplastics and are of smaller dimension. This fact indicates the terrestial origin of the particle due to human activity.

Conclusion: information and environmental awareness are presently, determinant for the preservation of the environment while waiting for forceful policies are not applied on the usage and management of plastics.

More information in the Project's report report >> and photographs in the annex>>

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