Plastic – Unknown threat to coast

The researchers wanted to find out how big is the problem of plastic waste on the Polish coast and in what form the plastic appears. Simple counting of plastic waste prior to chemical analysis will be very helpful to get answers to question: is our coast is in serious danger?

Some facts:

  • counting big (visible during the walk) plastic waste lying on the beach;
  • counting at any time of the year, at least on 1 km of beach in 100m sections;
  • listing for every 100 m of beach the waste in categories (bottles, bags, nets and other plastic waste);
  • the detailed guidelines are available on the project website.

Science citizenship

Result: After being sent to IOPAN (Institute of Oceanology, Polish Academy of Sciences) data are placed in the database table and presented on the map.

Together with the surface current database, it will be possible to assess the degree of risk of plastic waste.

The project was:

  • Accessible – everyone can participate; so special equipment needed;
  • Promotes ecological awareness;
  • Promotes involvement and builds the sense of agency;
  • Can be transferred to other fields.

Website: http://www.iopan.gda.pl/projects/NaukaObywatelska/4.html

Practice coordinator: LITORAL Foundation, under supervision of Sea Research Committee, Provincial Fund for
Environmental Protection and the Institute of Oceanology of the Polish Academy of Sciences

Target group: The project is open to a wide range of interested person (you do not need to have a financial or laboratory background).