Aims and objectives WEATHER-MIC | JPI OCEANS

Aims and objectives WEATHER-MIC

To assess how weathering processes influence the transport, fate and toxicity of microplastics (MPs) and their leachates in the marine environment

 

WEATHER-MIC will:

  • Use artificial weathering in lab experiments combined with non-target chemical analysis and particle imaging to “fingerprint” weathered plastic particles
  • Investigate how weathering processes of MPs influence their vertical distribution, trophic transfer and toxicity (by affecting size distribution, surface morphology, density, aggregation-flocculation behaviour and microbial biofilm communities)
  • Investigate if the 3D spatial distribution from lab-scale column tests can be extrapolated to field data from the Stockholm Archipelago and Oslo Harbour (using sediment transport models parameterized for MPs)
  • Assess toxic effects of weathered MPs by
    • toxicity tests using OECD guidelines adapted for ecotoxicological testing of MP particles
    • changes in biofilm communities
    • cell-based bioassays with MP leachates to identify modes-of-action and to quantify toxicity
  • Develop new tools to incorporate MP weathering into risk assessment of marine MP pollution

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