Microplastics in sediments from the littoral zone of the north Tunisian coast (Mediterranean Sea)

Sami Abidli, Joana Cepeda Antunes, Joana L. Ferreira, Youssef Lahbib, Paula Sobral, Najoua Trigui El Menif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The distribution of microplastics (MPs) was investigated in the sediments of five sampling sites from the northern Tunisian coast during June 2017. MPs were categorized according to type, colour and size. Representative MPs from the five sites were isolated for polymer identification using Fourier Transformed Infrared Spectroscopy in attenuated total reflectance mode (FTIR-ATR). Results showed that MPs were recovered, from all sediment samples, indicating for the first time, their extensive distribution in Tunisian coast. Concentrations varied from 141.20 ± 25.98 to 461.25 ± 29.74 items kg−1 dry weight. Fibres, fragments, Styrofoam®, pellets and films were the types registered in this study. With the exception of Menzel Bourguiba (MB), fibres significantly outnumbered plastic particles followed by fragments, Styrofoam®, films and pellets. The predominant colours are as follows: black > clear > white > red > blue > green for fibres, blue > white > clear > red > green > yellow > black for fragments, blue > white > black > clear for films while only white pellets and Styrofoam® were found. MPs particles ranged from 0.1 to 5 mm in length. A total of three polymer types were identified, polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS). Except for industrial pellets, the presence of MPs is likely due to the degradation of marine plastic debris accumulating in each site. This work provides original data of the presence of MPs in coastal sediments from Northern Tunisian coast.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalEstuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science
Volume205
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2018

Fingerprint

littoral zone
intertidal environment
Mediterranean Sea
plastics
coasts
sediments
coast
polymer
plastic
sediment
pellets
coastal sediment
infrared spectroscopy
films (materials)
reflectance
degradation
polymers
sampling
fibre
color

Keywords

  • FTIR-ATR
  • Microplastics
  • Northern Tunisia
  • Sediment

Cite this

Abidli, Sami ; Antunes, Joana Cepeda ; Ferreira, Joana L. ; Lahbib, Youssef ; Sobral, Paula ; Trigui El Menif, Najoua. / Microplastics in sediments from the littoral zone of the north Tunisian coast (Mediterranean Sea). In: Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science. 2018 ; Vol. 205. pp. 1-9.
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abstract = "The distribution of microplastics (MPs) was investigated in the sediments of five sampling sites from the northern Tunisian coast during June 2017. MPs were categorized according to type, colour and size. Representative MPs from the five sites were isolated for polymer identification using Fourier Transformed Infrared Spectroscopy in attenuated total reflectance mode (FTIR-ATR). Results showed that MPs were recovered, from all sediment samples, indicating for the first time, their extensive distribution in Tunisian coast. Concentrations varied from 141.20 ± 25.98 to 461.25 ± 29.74 items kg−1 dry weight. Fibres, fragments, Styrofoam{\circledR}, pellets and films were the types registered in this study. With the exception of Menzel Bourguiba (MB), fibres significantly outnumbered plastic particles followed by fragments, Styrofoam{\circledR}, films and pellets. The predominant colours are as follows: black > clear > white > red > blue > green for fibres, blue > white > clear > red > green > yellow > black for fragments, blue > white > black > clear for films while only white pellets and Styrofoam{\circledR} were found. MPs particles ranged from 0.1 to 5 mm in length. A total of three polymer types were identified, polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS). Except for industrial pellets, the presence of MPs is likely due to the degradation of marine plastic debris accumulating in each site. This work provides original data of the presence of MPs in coastal sediments from Northern Tunisian coast.",
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Microplastics in sediments from the littoral zone of the north Tunisian coast (Mediterranean Sea). / Abidli, Sami; Antunes, Joana Cepeda; Ferreira, Joana L.; Lahbib, Youssef; Sobral, Paula; Trigui El Menif, Najoua.

In: Estuarine, Coastal and Shelf Science, Vol. 205, 31.05.2018, p. 1-9.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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N2 - The distribution of microplastics (MPs) was investigated in the sediments of five sampling sites from the northern Tunisian coast during June 2017. MPs were categorized according to type, colour and size. Representative MPs from the five sites were isolated for polymer identification using Fourier Transformed Infrared Spectroscopy in attenuated total reflectance mode (FTIR-ATR). Results showed that MPs were recovered, from all sediment samples, indicating for the first time, their extensive distribution in Tunisian coast. Concentrations varied from 141.20 ± 25.98 to 461.25 ± 29.74 items kg−1 dry weight. Fibres, fragments, Styrofoam®, pellets and films were the types registered in this study. With the exception of Menzel Bourguiba (MB), fibres significantly outnumbered plastic particles followed by fragments, Styrofoam®, films and pellets. The predominant colours are as follows: black > clear > white > red > blue > green for fibres, blue > white > clear > red > green > yellow > black for fragments, blue > white > black > clear for films while only white pellets and Styrofoam® were found. MPs particles ranged from 0.1 to 5 mm in length. A total of three polymer types were identified, polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS). Except for industrial pellets, the presence of MPs is likely due to the degradation of marine plastic debris accumulating in each site. This work provides original data of the presence of MPs in coastal sediments from Northern Tunisian coast.

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