Citizen scientists reveal: Marine litter pollutes Arctic beaches and affects wild life

20Citations
Citations of this article
91Readers
Mendeley users who have this article in their library.

Abstract

Recent data indicate accumulation areas of marine litter in Arctic waters and significant increases over time. Beaches on remote Arctic islands may be sinks for marine litter and reflect pollution levels of the surrounding waters particularly well. We provide the first quantitative data from surveys carried out by citizen scientists on six beaches of Svalbard. Litter quantities recorded by cruise tourists varied from 9–524 g m− 2 and were similar to those from densely populated areas. Plastics accounted for > 80% of the overall litter, most of which originated from fisheries. Photographs provided by citizens show deleterious effects of beach litter on Arctic wildlife, which is already under strong pressure from global climate change. Our study highlights the potential of citizen scientists to provide scientifically valuable data on the pollution of sensitive remote ecosystems. The results stress once more that current legislative frameworks are insufficient to tackle the pollution of Arctic ecosystems.

Cite

CITATION STYLE

APA

Bergmann, M., Lutz, B., Tekman, M. B., & Gutow, L. (2017). Citizen scientists reveal: Marine litter pollutes Arctic beaches and affects wild life. Marine Pollution Bulletin, 125(1–2), 535–540. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2017.09.055

Register to see more suggestions

Mendeley helps you to discover research relevant for your work.

Already have an account?

Save time finding and organizing research with Mendeley

Sign up for free