Dealing with Marine Plastic Pollution

How can we deal with marine plastic pollution in Canada’s northern waters?

Marine plastics can damage commercial fishing stocks, ecosystems and ocean infrastructure and can also move toxic chemicals into food webs, potentially impacting human health. Currently, Canada lacks a long-term monitoring program for marine plastics to guide future response to this issue.

Dr. Liboiron and her team will develop and evaluate three approaches for monitoring marine plastics in northern Canada: biological monitoring, citizen science trawls, and shoreline sampling for icy and rocky coasts. These methods will assess marine plastic quantities, types, and sources, to establish the first comprehensive baseline in Canada’s northern waters. This project will establish a methodology for plastic sampling in the North, and provide monitoring data on the quantities and types of marine plastics currently in the north, to allow environmental managers, policy makers and community groups to develop effective monitoring and response plans for marine plastic pollution in the North.

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