Fate and effects of microplastics ; Deadline for abstract submission extended to October 15
Almost all aspects of daily life involve plastics, and consequently the production of plastics has increased substantially the last 60 years. Plastics are persistent materials, which tend to accumulate in the marine environment and affect marine life as they remain there for years.
Themicroplastic(MP) are generally defined asallplastic particlesless than 1 mmand canhave several origins/sources.PrimaryMPsare includedin industrialabrasives,exfoliants, cosmetics, andpre-productionplastic beads the latter beingone of the maincomponents of marinedebris.SecondaryMPsare products ofdegradation (mechanical forces and / orphotochemical processes) plastic debris. Another importantpart of the secondaryMPs comes fromsyntheticfibers produced duringourlaundry.
Those particles also contain additives such as UV-stabilizers, colourings, flame retardants and plasticizers, which are transported by the particles and are susceptible for uptake and accumulation by living organisms. Thesemicroplasticcanadsorbpersistent organic pollutants(POPs) andfacilitate theirtransferin marinefood webs.ThesePOPscan beseveral orders of magnitudemore concentrated inMPsas compared to the surrounding water.
Althoughthe absorption ofMPsfrom differentmarine organismsbegan to bereported in the literatureaboutthebiologicaleffects ofMPare still very limited.