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Microplastic contamination in east Antarctic sea ice


Kelly, AA and Lannuzel, D and Rodemann, T and Meiners, KM and Auman, HJ, Microplastic contamination in east Antarctic sea ice, Marine Pollution Bulletin, 154 Article 111130. ISSN 0025-326X (2020) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

© 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

DOI: doi:10.1016/j.marpolbul.2020.111130


The durability of plastics in the marine environment has led to concerns regarding the pervasiveness of this debris in remote polar habitats. Microplastic (MP) enrichment in East Antarctic sea ice was measured in one ice core sampled from coastal land-fast sea ice. The core was processed and filtered material was analyzed using micro Fourier-Transform Infrared (μFTIR) spectroscopy. 96 MP particles were identified, averaging 11.71 particles L−1. The most common MP polymers (polyethylene, polypropylene, and polyamide) were consistent with those most frequently represented in the majority of marine MP studies. Sea-ice MP concentrations were positively related with chlorophyll a, suggesting living biomass could assist in incorporating MPs in sea ice. Our preliminary results indicate that sea ice has the potential to serve as a reservoir for MP debris in the Southern Ocean, which may have consequences for Southern Ocean food webs and biogeochemistry.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:microplastics, marine debris, land-fast sea ice, East Antarctica, Southern Ocean, plastic pollution
Research Division:Environmental Sciences
Research Group:Pollution and contamination
Research Field:Pollution and contamination not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Environmental Management
Objective Group:Management of Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments
Objective Field:Management of Antarctic and Southern Ocean environments not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Kelly, AA (Mrs Anna Kelly)
UTAS Author:Lannuzel, D (Associate Professor Delphine Lannuzel)
UTAS Author:Rodemann, T (Dr Thomas Rodemann)
UTAS Author:Meiners, KM (Dr Klaus Meiners)
UTAS Author:Auman, HJ (Dr Heidi Auman)
ID Code:138478
Year Published:2020
Web of Science® Times Cited:90
Deposited By:Ecology and Biodiversity
Deposited On:2020-04-09
Last Modified:2021-03-22
Downloads:3 View Download Statistics

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