A Citizen Science project being launched by the Conservation Council of Western Australia is set to reveal marine plastic pollution hotspots by engaging volunteers in studying the distribution of minute plastic particles around the Southwest coastline, from Geraldton to Esperance.
In a first for WA, the project will involve volunteer ‘citizen scientists’ around the southwest who will take hundreds of samples of beach sand. The samples will be analysed by UWA researcher Dr Harriet Paterson to reveal the true extent of plastic contamination in the marine environment.
The sampling will identify tiny fragments of plastic called micro-plastics which affect marine life on a global scale. The particles look like food to marine life, but when ingested can kill animals and deliver toxic chemicals to the animals tissue. (…) (08/2016)