sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Boats for Sale MarineBusiness-World Sail-World Racing Cruising Int Magnetic Is RW Photo Gallery FishingBoating
Sail-World.com : New Australian study shows plastic pollution much worse than accepted
New Australian study shows plastic pollution much worse than accepted


'Marine plastic concentrations in Australian waters'    . ©

Plastic pollution in Australian waters is likely to be much worse than officially recognised, posing a threat to Australian species and ecology, according to the latest study published in journal PLOS ONE.

Each square kilometre of Australian sea surface water is contaminated by around 4,000 pieces of tiny plastics, according to researchers, Julia Reisser, Oceanographer and PhD candidate at the University of Western Australia and Charitha Pattiaratchi, Winthrop Professor of Coastal Oceanography at UWA.

These small plastic fragments, mostly less than 5mm across, are loaded with pollutants that can negatively affect several marine species, from tiny fish and zooplankton to large turtles and whales.

Plastics can be transported from populated areas to the marine environment by rivers, wind, tides, rainwater, storm drains, sewage disposal, and flooding, or can directly reach the sea from boats and offshore installations.

Throughout their marine journey, plastics break down into increasingly smaller pieces mostly due to the effect of sunlight and heat. These plastic fragments, commonly called microplastics when smaller than 5mm, represent the vast majority of human-made debris present at beaches, seafloor, and in the water column.

The effects of plastics on food webs and ecosystems have become focus of concern over the last decade. It is now known that over half of our plastic objects contain at least one ingredient classified as hazardous.

To make matters worse, plastics that enter the oceans become increasingly toxic by adsorbing oily pollutants on their surface.

When plastic is ingested, these concentrated toxins can be delivered to animals and transferred up their food chains.

This biomagnification of toxins is more likely to occur when plastics are small enough to be ingested by low trophic fauna, such as small fish and zooplankton.

These tiny ocean plastics may affect the health of entire food webs, which include humans. For instance, little plastic pieces were found in the stomach of some Southern Bluefin tuna captured off Tasmania and destined for human consumption.

Until now, plastic contamination in Australian waters was mostly inferred from beach clean-up reports. There was no at-sea survey focused on sampling plastic debris in waters around this country.

Researchers used a net called Manta Net to catch floating plastics at the ocean surface. Small fragments of hard plastic were the most common type, but soft plastics, such as fragments of wrappers, and strings (mostly fishing lines) were also common.

Oceanic gyres  .. .  
Size and types of marine plastics collected around Australia. Examples of each plastic type are shown in the photos.
These plastics were mostly made of polyolefins (polyethylene and polypropylene). These polymers account for 52% of our plastic production and are typically used to make throwaway packaging. They are also used for manufacturing fishing equipment such as crates, nets, ropes, and lines.

Our overall mean sea surface plastic concentration was 4,256.4 plastic pieces per km2. This mean value is higher than those reported for other regions, such as the Caribbean Sea (1,414 pieces per km2) and Gulf of Maine (1,534 pieces per km2).

However, in the subtropical gyres, plastics tend to accumulate due to converging ocean currents, and mean plastic concentrations are higher: from 20,328 pieces per km2 in the North Atlantic Gyre, to 334,271 pieces per km2 in the North Pacific Gyre. The Mediterranean Sea is also a global hotspot for plastics: it has around 116,000 plastics per km2.

Researchers observed higher plastic concentrations close to major Australian cities (Sydney, Brisbane) and industrial centres (Karratha) as well as in remote areas where ocean currents converged (such as south-west Tasmania).

These observations, along with our ocean current modelling results, indicate that marine plastics reach Australian waters from multiple sources: domestic and international populated areas, as well as maritime operations.

Plastics, made mostly of oil and gas, are cheaper than the natural materials they replace for the manufacture of many objects, such as packaging and fishing gear.

As a result, incentives to re-use or recycle every-day items have decreased over the last few decades. Meanwhile plastic production has increased from 1,700,00 tonnes in 1950 to 280,000,000 tonnes in 2011.

In Australia, 1,476,690 tonnes of plastics were used in 2011-2012, of which just 20.5% was recycled. Most of these plastics (around 37%) were used for manufacturing single-use disposable packaging, including plastic bottles, cups, and bags.

Marine plastic pollution is a global issue caused by our massive production of plastic waste. The solution for this recent environmental problem is not simple.

Authors of the report believe there are three important steps. First, decrease plastic waste: this could be achieved by reducing production of single-use plastic packaging. Second, improve our plastic disposal practices on land at an international level. And last, better enforce the laws prohibiting dumping of plastics at sea.

More at www.plosone.org


by Jeni Bone

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=117812

7:28 AM Mon 23 Dec 2013GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.







Sail-World Cruising News - local and the World

Hamilton Island Audi Race Week 2015 – Have you booked your accommodation? It is always good to book early to secure the best properties as these book out first. ... [more]  

Airbnb may a popular 'peer-to-peer' lodging site on the web, but if you want to rent a boat in your local area or away, you’ve got options, too. Boatbound.com, Boatsetter.com and Cruzin.com are just a few of the new crop of online websites offering a chance to rent a boat for the day or weekend. ... [more]  

Australian father-son duo delays trip back home by By Matt Sheley | The Newport Daily News
Lousy weather and a wonky autopilot kept the 43-foot sailboat Sedona docked Monday at the Conanicut Marina in downtown Jamestown. Australians Reg and Jason McGlashan rode out the snow in the boat’s cabin, waiting for a marine electrician to show up and fix its electrical system. ... [more]  

The Wine List by Crystal Blues by SV Crystal Blues
After a busy few weeks we are almost ready for our departure to Sri Lanka and beyond. Friends Ray and Jan Pitt signed off the boat in Thailand, leaving us spoiled, relaxed and ready for the future. Four weeks ago we sailed south (overnight) from Koh Phayam, spending four days in Phuket, provisioning and making ready. ... [more]  

With shark encounters and bites on the rise, Lindsay Lyon, Shark Advocate and Managing Director of Shark Shield, the world’s only proven shark deterrent technology, provides his tips on preventing a shark attack as the last days of summer roll in. ... [more]  

Making its world debut at the Cannes Yachting Festival in 2014, the Beneteau Oceanis 35 is already making its mark in Australia, with a second place in its division on its first outing at the Festival of Sails, Geelong, Victoria in January. ... [more]  

The Baja Ha-Ha… The 750-mile cruiser rally from San Diego to Cabo San Lucas beckons with adventure, fun and memories-to-be-made. This year 171 boats and 525 participants answered the call. ... [more]  

Oceans of Hope is a Sailing Sclerosis Foundation project that aims to change perceptions of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), inspiring people with the disease to overcome their own personal challenges by telling the stories of those taking part in the first ever circumnavigation by a yacht crewed by people with MS. ... [more]  

Roads and Maritime Services expand live vision of conditions by Transport Roads and Maritime Services
Boaters now have access to live vision of conditions at more locations with an expanded network of 18 cameras in key coastal areas and one alpine waterway in NSW. ... [more]  

Boaters urged to postpone boating until conditions subside by Transport Roads and Maritime Services
Roads and Maritime Services is urging boaters in northern NSW to take extra care and consider whether it is necessary to go boating during heavy rain and blustery conditions resulting from Cyclone Marcia. ... [more]  

Rottnest Island set for the annual Festival of Sail by Susan Ghent, Western Australia
Picturesque Rottnest Island in Western Australia is the ideal backdrop for a weekend of yachting and social activities. Now in its fifth year, the two day Rottnest Festival of Sail will be held over the weekend of 28 and 29 March. Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht Club now invites entries for this annual event. ... [more]  

High seas weather warning for Metarea 10 issued by the Australian Bureau of Meteorology Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre Brisbane at 0907 UTC 19 February 2015. Hurricane force wind warning for North Eastern Area. ... [more]  

Tropical Cyclone Marcia is moving quickly through the Coral Sea towards the Queensland coast. The recent movement has been to the southwest, and it is expected to maintain this general motion through to landfall on the eastern Queensland coast between St Lawrence and Bundaberg early on Friday. Tropical Cyclone Marcia is expected to slowly intensify, with the possibility of reaching category 2 inte ... [more]  

Pacific Sky Power is launching the Kite Controller, a redesigned reel-bar with a compression winch that maintains equal line lengths throughout the launch and retrieval. For kayaks and canoes, this system enables sailing with a kite. ... [more]  

Boat owners cruising in Turkish waters are facing more difficulties because a new law regarding Residence Permits is confusing everyone concerned. ... [more]  

I was ruined...completely and utterly ruined. At the young age of 22, my very first trip to the Caribbean was to Eleuthera, which is, in my opinion, the most beautiful place on earth. It will now be an uphill battle for me to surpass my visit there. ... [more]  

This is an in-water trial set-up, which will involve The Albert Park Yachting and Angling Club (APYAC) assisting Fisheries Victoria and University of Melbourne to load and deploy locally sourced limestone rubble and other materials etc. onto to the seabed ... [more]  

ABC Media reports that a fire has ripped through Middle Harbour Yacht Club at the Spit Mosman. Emergency services were called to the club just before 11:00pm on Sunday to find the building was well alight ... [more]  

OCA Series - Face the fear with Julie Salisbury as she takes you on a journey at sea, encountering sharks and jellyfish, complete darkness alone 1,000 miles from land, battling malaria, a debilitating back injury, and being jilted in Malaysia and left alone with no money, friends, or home. ... [more]  

Dominica has been on 'the' list for quite some time now and when I actually get to do something on 'the' list, my heart skips a beat! Although Dominica still remains somewhat off-the-beaten track for boaters, it is located right in the middle of the chain of Caribbean islands and can be easily accessed from Antigua and Guadeloupe to the north or Martinique and St. Lucia to the south. ... [more]  

Yachts arriving in the Galapagos are now subject to more stringent checks to prevent introduced species invading the Islands. ... [more]  

Cruising under Power - With more and more members trading in the sails for the power option we thought we’d take a look and see if taking on the Power option really was turning to the Dark Side! ... [more]  

50th Newport Bermuda Race - When I wrote my history of the race, A Berth to Bermuda, in 2006, one theme wove its way through the narrative: Anyone who wishes to win the oldest of all ocean races must be prepared to be bold in choosing strategy and tactics. Jim McCurdy designed Carinas and sailed with the Nyes, as did his daughters, Hope and Sheila. ... [more]  

About five percent of our land-based mess (12.7 million metric tons of plastic) estimated to wind up in the water. Since their invention roughly 75 years ago, plastics have become increasingly prevalent in the consumer marketplace. Today, we use and dispose of plastics on a daily basis, in products like bottled water and grocery bags. Plastics now represent a significant portion of the solid waste ... [more]  

The Maritime Management Centre in NSW is calling on members of the boating public to have their say on a draft paper reviewing lifejacket safety standards in Australia. ... [more]  

At 20.29 UTC, Captian Piotr Kuzniar, & his 10 man polish crew onboard the 67 foot yacht Selma, reached the edge of the ice in the Ross Sea, at 78,43.S in the Bay of Whales, just over 100 nautical miles farther south then the previous record. ... [more]  

A Sunshine Coast driver has had that horrible sinking feeling after his car went under water at a local boat ramp. ... [more]  

Setouchi International Yacht Rally - Long time members Colin and Marion on Avant Garde got the opportunity of a lifetime sailing on the Setouchi Yacht Rally and spend some time cruising the Japanese Inland Sea, they loved it and the rally is being run again this year. Here are a few comments from Colin. ... [more]  

A cruising yacht has vanished from Opua and its owners fear it may have been sailed overseas.Could this happen to your yacht? Retired Whangarei couple Carol and Stephen Holland have owned the 14m cutter Harlech for 13 years and taken it on two trips to the South Pacific. ... [more]  

Early this morning a man suffered suspected spinal injuries when he and two companions were thrown from their 5m runabout as it flipped end-to-end on the hazardous Nambucca River Bar. ... [more]  

Getting your gear (wheel) on by Rob Kothe and Jedda Murphy Sail-World
On our new format Sail-World website you can see a Setting Gear Wheel on the top right hand side of each page of the website. This gives you the ability to decide the site layout you like best. ... [more]  

Offshore preparedness the focus of operation ‘Blue Water’ by Transport Roads and Maritime Services
Roads and Maritime Services Boating Safety Officers will be out in force on NSW waterways from today as part of Operation Blue Water with zero tolerance to boaters not carrying the correct safety equipment or following lifejacket laws. ... [more]  

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) is urging owners of emergency beacons to dispose of their unwanted beacons correctly. ... [more]  

Boat Docking Secrets - How to Avoid Springline Snap-back
New legislation would fix renewable fuel standard
New legislation would fix renewable fuel standard
Provisioning the aCappella Way
Rare and very unusual shark caught by fishermen on NSW Coast
Best Loch Ness Monster evidence may have been destroyed
Tall ship falls over - Could your boat do this?
Dangerous conditions predicted for NSW boaters
Cruise in company and enjoy a beautiful weekend at Cruising Yacht Club
Two Somali pirates appeal in deaths of four Americans aboard yacht
Producing jet fuel from ocean algae
The true story of Donald Crowhurst set for a major film adaptation
Humans drive 500 species of land animals extinct, now marine?
Club Marine magazine subscribers can win Birthday Bonanza prizes
Predicting coral reef futures under climate change
Sailors for the Sea launches ocean conservation movement to heal ocean
Changed boating conditions for Triathlon on Cudgen Creek next Sunday
Family rescued after catamaran breaks in half
New Holiday Camps at Lake Macquarie with the H2O Sports Academy
Sailing Sclerosis Oceans of Hope arrives in Panama City + Video
Planning an open ocean cruise? Become a Citizen Oceanographer   
Rarely sighted frilled shark turns up in Victorian waters   
Croatia First Regatta - Brand new limited entry one design event   
Doyle Sails offer sail repair and basic rigging service at BOISW   
World Arc Leg 2 - Fleet depart for San Blas   
World Arc - First arrivals to St Helena island   
Multihull Solutions launches expansive new website   
2014 warmest year since records began + Video   
Marine Rescue Trial Bay in midnight tow for disabled yacht   
Volcano creates large new Tongan island   
Summer camps for teens aboard an extraordinary tall ship   
Highland Yacht Club - Lake Ontario’s hidden jewel of a Yacht Club   
Particular Harbour – Gananoque   
SE Asia tanker hijacks rose in 2014 - IMB report reveals   
Rescuing Ben Ainslie from a boat? Stranger things have happened at sea   
Christmas Caribbean Rally - Success, new dates, multihulls offer   
Cruising like a Vendée Racer   
World ARC - Two rally fleets set sail   
Hidden battles on Reefs - How will corals fare in a changing ocean?   
Coral reefs threatened by a combination of changing ocean conditions   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph, contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW Cru SH
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT