LITTERBASE: An Online Portal for Marine Litter and Microplastics and Their Implications for Marine Life

Melanie.Bergmann [ at ]


For many years, the pollution of the oceans with marine litter received only little attention from the public although the global plastic production has grown steadily. However, since the “discovery” of the oceanic garbage patches and microplastics the littering of the oceans has become a hot topic, which is reflected in strong recent increases in the number of publications. Despite growing research efforts many questions remain unanswered and the new wealth of information does not readily transpire to the general public, which is left unsettled. For example, it is still unclear what the overall extent of ocean pollution is, or how the enormous amounts of oceanic plastics affect marine life and ecosystems. To overcome this uncertainty and make best use of the existing knowledge, we currently develop an online portal for marine litter and microplastic pollution named LITTERBASE. As of early 2017, LITTERBASE will provide access to the current state of understanding of marine litter and microplastics to the general public and stakeholders. Published records of marine litter and microplastics and their impact on marine life will be compiled in a database. The regularly updated information will be displayed in distribution maps and other graphs in an interactive online portal. In the long run, data from citizen scientists may also be integrated into these infographs.

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Research Networks
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Eprint ID
DOI 10.1016/B978-0-12-812271-6.00104-6

Cite as
Bergmann, M. , Tekman, M. B. and Gutow, L. (2017): LITTERBASE: An Online Portal for Marine Litter and Microplastics and Their Implications for Marine Life / J. Baztan , B. Jorgensen , S. Pahl , R. Thompson and J. Vanderlinden (editors) , In: Fate and Impact of Microplastics in Marine Ecosystems, MICRO 2016, Amsterdam, Elsevier, 2 p. . doi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-812271-6.00104-6

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