Home » INTERNATIONAL MARINE LITTER DATABASE » Year of publication » 2012 » Biologists record increasing amounts of plastic litter in the Arctic deep sea: studies confirm that twice as much marine debris is lying on the seabed today compared to ten years ago
http://www.awi.de/en/news/press_releases/detail/item/biologist_find_more_and_more_plastic_waste_in_the_arctic_deep_sea/?cHash=6a86963d9579ef0efcda6734d726a63f Bremerhaven, 22nd October 2012. The sea bed in the Arctic deep sea is increasingly strewn with litter and plastic waste. As reported in the advance online publication of the scientific journal Marine Pollution Bulletin by Dr. Melanie Bergmann, biologist and deep-sea expert at the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in the Helmholtz Association. The quantities of waste observed at the AWI deep-sea observatory HAUSGARTEN are even higher than those found in a deep-sea canyon near the Portuguese capital Lisbon. For this study Dr. Melanie Bergmann examined some 2100 seafloor photographs taken near HAUSGARTEN, the deep-sea observatory of the Alfred Wegener Institute in the eastern Fram Strait. This is the sea route between Greenland and the Norwegian island Spitsbergen. “The study was prompted by a gut feeling. When looking through our images I got the impression that plastic bags and other litter on the seafloor were seen more frequently in photos from 2011 than in those dating back to earlier years. For this reason I decided to go systematically through all photos from 2002, 2004, 2007, 2008 and 2011,” Melanie Bergmann explains.