Distribution and trajectories of floating and benthic marine macrolitter in the south-eastern North Sea


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Lars.Gutow [ at ] awi.de

Abstract

In coastal waters the identification of sources, trajectories and deposition sites of marine litter is often hampered by the complex oceanography of shallow shelf seas. We conducted a multi-annual survey on litter at the sea surface and on the seafloor in the south-eastern North Sea. Bottom trawling was identified as a major source of marine litter. Oceanographic modelling revealed that the distribution of floating litter in the North Sea is largely determined by the site of origin of floating objects whereas the trajectories are strongly influenced by wind drag. Methods adopted from species distribution modelling indicated that resuspension of benthic litter and nearbottom transport processes strongly influence the distribution of litter on the seafloor. Major sink regions for floating marine litter were identified at the west coast of Denmark and in the Skagerrak. Our results may support the development of strategies to reduce the pollution of the North Sea.



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ISI/Scopus peer-reviewed
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Published
Eprint ID
47355
DOI 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.05.003

Cite as
Gutow, L. , Ricker, M. , Holstein, J. , Dannheim, J. , Stanev, E. V. and Wolff, J. O. (2018): Distribution and trajectories of floating and benthic marine macrolitter in the south-eastern North Sea , Marine Pollution Bulletin, 131 , pp. 763-772 . doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.05.003


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