Synthetic shorelines in New Zealand? Quantification and characterisation of microplastic pollution on Canterbury's coastlines (2016)
Type of ContentJournal Article
PublisherUniversity of Canterbury. Chemistry
- Science: Journal Articles 
Microplastics are persistent environmental contaminants found in marine environments worldwide. Microplastic particles isolated from coastlines in the Canterbury region of New Zealand were quantified and characterised. Sediment samples were collected from ten locations representing exposed-beach, estuarine and harbour environments in both urban and non-urban settings. Particles were isolated from sediments using a NaCl density-separation procedure and quantified and characterised with a combination of optical/fluorescence imaging and micro-Raman spectroscopy. Microplastics were detected at 8 out of 10 locations, at concentrations ranging from 0 – 45.4 particles kg⁻¹ of dry sediment. The majority of microplastics were identified as polystyrene (55%), polyethylene (21%) and polypropylene (11%). Microplastic concentrations in exposed-beach environments were significantly greater than harbour and estuarine environments.
CitationClunies-Ross, P.J., Smith, G.P.S., Gordon, K.C., Gaw, S. (2016) Synthetic shorelines in New Zealand? Quantification and characterisation of microplastic pollution on Canterbury's coastlines. New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research, pp. 1-9.
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KeywordsNew Zealand; Canterbury; Marine Debris; Microplastics; Microbead; Raman
ANZSRC Fields of Research41 - Environmental sciences::4104 - Environmental management::410402 - Environmental assessment and monitoring
05 - Environmental Sciences::0502 - Environmental Science and Management::050206 - Environmental Monitoring
37 - Earth sciences::3701 - Atmospheric sciences::370104 - Atmospheric composition, chemistry and processes
03 - Chemical Sciences::0303 - Macromolecular and Materials Chemistry::030301 - Chemical Characterisation of Materials
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