Welcome to FIS   Sponsored By
Subscribe to FIS | Register with FIS | Advertise with FIS | Newsletter | About FIS | Contact us
   


The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute tool called Ventana, taking samples from sea creatures. (Photo courtesy of the Monterey Bay)

The New Pollution: Monterey Bay is Swimming in Microplastic

Click on the flag for more information about United States UNITED STATES
Monday, June 10, 2019, 16:00 (GMT + 9)

Monterey Bay -- long considered an environmental success story--is now facing a new threat: tiny particles of plastic.

And scientists are finding that it's far worse than they suspected.

The bay is a national marine sanctuary, a place where environmental protections and sustainable fishing have transformed what was once a stew of dumped waste products from local sardine canneries.

Long gone is the industrial filth that John Steinbeck described in his Depression-era novel Cannery Row. Now, the bay is cleaned up and home to seals, otters, and the occasional humpback whale.

“This is not where you would expect to find tons of marine pollution,” said Kyle Van Houtan, who oversees research for the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

But that’s exactly what researchers found when they sent a robot trolling into the water. Van Houtan's team found  microplastics in quantities much higher than previously expected at nearly every level of the water column, according to a paper published this week in Scientific Reports from the publishers of Nature.

This suggests that the deep sea, the Earth’s largest habitat, could be its “biggest repository of small plastic debris,” said Anela Choy, the report’s lead author, in a statement released with the study.

At about a quarter-mile below the surface they found plastic particles at concentrations four times that near the surface or along the sea floor.

Most of the samples were collected in Monterey Canyon, about 15 miles off the coast. The team took a smaller number of samples from Moss Landing Harbor.

Previous studies focused on plastic on the surface of the ocean, in places such as the much-publicized mid-ocean vortex known as the Great Pacific garbage patch, and on the sea floor. But Scientists have recently begun to focus on degraded motes of microplastics floating around in the water column.

To marine life, scientists say the plastic is indistinguishable from the organic material known as "marine snow," commonly eaten by small crabs and filter feeders, which consume the plastic and introduce the pollution into the larger food web.

“Our study demonstrates a link between microplastics distributed across the water column and entry of this foreign material into marine food webs,” said Choy, a marine biologist with Scripps Institution of Oceanography in San Diego.

The paper is a joint study between Scripps, Monterey Bay Aquarium, and its sister organization, the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute.

The plastic particles are not likely local, but the accreted debris from plastics that have been in the ocean for years, maybe decades.  Much of it was probably once single-use plastic that has broken down over time.

“We are finding material that circulated throughout perhaps the entire North Pacific,” Van Houtan said.

Using robots that filtered seawater to capture particles smaller than 5 millimeters in size, they collected repeated samples at a range of depths, from just below the surface to 3,000 feet below.

Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute engineers spent considerable time and effort developing a device to collect and filter microplastic deep below the surface of Monterey Bay. (Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute)

"In order for us to access these areas, we rely on robotics to do that work," said Kakani Katija, an engineer with  MBARI. "We were able to find microplastics even in the deep sea."

Removing the plastic from the ocean is a real challenge, Katija said, adding that a solution might be to prevent more of it from polluting the water in the first place.

California lawmakers are considering legislation to phase out the sale and distribution of some plastics. The companion bills, SB 54 and AB 1080,  target a wide range of single-use plastics, such as utensils, containers, and other items that can’t be recycled. The bills moved forward in the Legislature last month.

“I can’t think of a dive that I’ve been on that I haven’t seen some form of plastic, whether it be plastic bottles, or plastic bags,” said Amanda Kahn, who studies deep sea sponges in Monterey Bay as a postdoctoral fellow for MBARI. “One time we saw a plastic lawn chair.”

KQED Fuhs Fellow Jazmine Mejia Munoz contributed to this report.

Source: Kevin Stark/kqed.org

[email protected]
www.fis.com


 Print


Click to know how to advertise in FIS
MORE NEWS
Viet Nam
Sep 25, 17:00 (GMT + 9):
Bright prospects for seafood sector in final quarter
Norway
Sep 25, 12:00 (GMT + 9):
Statistics │ Export │ Frozen crab to Japan, Korea, Taiwan, China, Vietnam, USA, Canada and Europe
Tanzania
Sep 25, 07:00 (GMT + 9):
Technology aiding youth boost fish farming
United States
Sep 25, 06:40 (GMT + 9):
IN BRIEF - Tennessee forms commission to halt invasive Asian carp
United Kingdom
Sep 25, 06:00 (GMT + 9):
Antarctic krill take refuge from climate change
South Korea
Sep 25, 03:20 (GMT + 9):
Frozen octopus prices have dropped 15%
European Union
Sep 25, 03:10 (GMT + 9):
Statistics │Import │ Frozen octopus: Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal, Mexico, Vietnam │ 2020
European Union
Sep 25, 03:00 (GMT + 9):
Statistics │ Export to USA and others │Frozen octopus │2020
Argentina
Sep 25, 02:00 (GMT + 9):
The 1st Workshop on the use of satellite images in the Argentine squid fishery was held
Chile
Sep 25, 00:50 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | aqua.cl: SalmonChile subscribes to the international organization of sustainable aquaculture
Spain
Sep 25, 00:40 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | SalmonBusiness: Spanish land-based salmon farmer switches RAS tech provider
United Kingdom
Sep 25, 00:30 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | fishfarmingexpert: UN hears how seaweed farming relieves poverty
Netherlands
Sep 25, 00:20 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | FiskerForum: VisNed files complaint against Greenpeace
Mexico
Sep 25, 00:10 (GMT + 9):
Other Media | Industrias Pesqueras: Mexico develops through Inapesca projects to ensure the sustainability of the shrimp fishery
United States
Sep 25, 00:00 (GMT + 9):
Weekly production of Alaskan pollock roe (DAP in BSAI/GOA) | week 37



Lenguaje
FEATURED EVENTS
  
TOP STORIES
Coronavirus found on imported russian squid packaging
China Changchun's Covid-19 prevention office said the squid had been imported to China from Russia last month and urged anyone who believed they bought it to get an urgent test NINGBO, China (Reuters) - Au...
Frozen mackerel, 74% imported from Norway
South Korea In August 2020, frozen mackerel imports amounted to 1,908 tons, down 18 % from 2,336 tons a year earlier.  The cumulative import volume reached 29,304 tons in August, up 4 % from 28,227 tons a ye...
The countdown begins for the shrimp
Argentina   The following is an excerpt from an article in Revista Puerto: There are few open areas for fishing, many concentrated boats and bad weather. Yields have dropped in recent weeks and the seaso...
Fisheries and aquaculture are perceived as the most sustainable industry in a new survey
Norway When people are asked what is the most sustainable industry in Norway, 29 percent answer fishing and farming. There are almost twice as many who answer oil and gas, who come in second place. IT, indus...
 
Maruha Nichiro Corporation
Nichirei Corporation - Headquarters
Pesquera El Golfo S.A.
Ventisqueros - Productos del Mar Ventisqueros S.A
Wärtsilä Corporation - Wartsila Group Headquarters
ITOCHU Corporation - Headquarters
BAADER - Nordischer Maschinenbau Rud. Baader GmbH+Co.KG (Head Office)
Inmarsat plc - Global Headquarters
Marks & Spencer
Tesco PLC (Supermarket) - Headquarters
Sea Harvest Corporation (PTY) Ltd. - Group Headquarters
I&J - Irvin & Johnson Holding Company (Pty) Ltd.
AquaChile S.A. - Group Headquarters
Pesquera San Jose S.A.
Nutreco N.V. - Head Office
CNFC China National Fisheries Corporation - Group Headquarters
W. van der Zwan & Zn. B.V.
SMMI - Sunderland Marine Mutual Insurance Co., Ltd. - Headquarters
Icicle Seafoods, Inc
Starkist Seafood Co. - Headquearters
Trident Seafoods Corp.
American Seafoods Group LLC - Head Office
Marel - Group Headquarters
SalMar ASA - Group Headquarters
Sajo Industries Co., Ltd
Hansung Enterprise Co.,Ltd.
BIM - Irish Sea Fisheries Board (An Bord Iascaigh Mhara)
CEFAS - Centre for Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science
COPEINCA ASA - Corporacion Pesquera Inca S.A.C.
Chun Cheng Fishery Enterprise Pte Ltd.
VASEP - Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters & Producers
Gomes da Costa
Furuno Electric Co., Ltd. (Headquarters)
NISSUI - Nippon Suisan Kaisha, Ltd. - Group Headquarters
FAO - Food and Agriculture Organization - Fisheries and Aquaculture Department (Headquarter)
Hagoromo Foods Co., Ltd.
Koden Electronics Co., Ltd. (Headquarters)
A.P. Møller - Maersk A/S - Headquarters
BVQI - Bureau Veritas Quality International (Head Office)
UPS - United Parcel Service, Inc. - Headquarters
Brim ehf (formerly HB Grandi Ltd) - Headquarters
Hamburg Süd Group - (Headquearters)
Armadora Pereira S.A. - Group Headquarters
NOAA - National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Headquarters)
Mowi ASA (formerly Marine Harvest ASA) - Headquarters
Marubeni Europe Plc -UK-
Findus Ltd
Icom Inc. (Headquarter)
WWF Centroamerica
Oceana Group Limited
The David and Lucile Packard Foundation
Ajinomoto Co., Inc. - Headquarters
Friosur S.A. - Headquarters
Cargill, Incorporated - Global Headquarters
Benihana Inc.
Leardini Pescados Ltda
CJ Corporation  - Group Headquarters
Greenpeace International - The Netherlands | Headquarters
David Suzuki Foundation
Fisheries and Oceans Canada -Communications Branch-
Mitsui & Co.,Ltd - Headquarters
NOREBO Group (former Ocean Trawlers Group)
Natori Co., Ltd.
Carrefour Supermarket - Headquarters
FedEx Corporation - Headquarters
Cooke Inc. - Group Headquarters
AKBM - Aker BioMarine ASA
Seafood Choices Alliance -Headquarter-
Austevoll Seafood ASA
Walmart | Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Supermarket) - Headquarters
New Japan Radio Co.Ltd (JRC) -Head Office-
Gulfstream JSC
Marine Stewardship Council - MSC Worldwide Headquarters
Royal Dutch Shell plc (Headquarter)
Genki Sushi Co.,Ltd -Headquarter-
Iceland Pelagic ehf
AXA Assistance Argentina S.A.
Caterpillar Inc. - Headquarters
Tiger Brands Limited
SeaChoice
National Geographic Society
AmazonFresh, LLC - AmazonFresh

Copyright 1995 - 2020 Fish Info & Services Co.Ltd| All Rights Reserved.   DISCLAIMER