Percentage of microbeads in pelagic microplastics within Japanese coastal waters. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Percentage of microbeads in pelagic microplastics within Japanese coastal waters.
Mar Pollut Bull. 2016 Sep 15 ;110(1):432-437. Epub 2016 Jun 11. PMID: 27297592
To compare the quantity of microbeads with the quantity of pelagic microplastics potentially degraded in the marine environment, samples were collected in coastal waters of Japan using neuston nets. Pelagic spherical microbeads were collected in the size range below 0.8mm at 9 of the 26 stations surveyed. The number of pelagic microbeads smaller than 0.8mm accounted for 9.7% of all microplastics collected at these 9 stations. This relatively large percentage results from a decrease in the abundance of microplastics smaller than 0.8mm in the upper ocean, as well as the regular loading of new microbeads from land areas, in this size range. In general, microbeads in personal care and cosmetic products are not always spherical, but rather are often a variety of irregular shapes. It is thus likely that this percentage is a conservative estimate, because of the irregular shapes of the remaining pelagic microbeads.