Along with sediments, nutrients and pesticides, other contaminants have also been detected in the inshore ecosystems of the Great Barrier Reef.
In general, there is a lack of available monitoring data. Their presence, concentrations and potential effects are not yet well understood.
AIMS conducts regular in-situ monitoring of microplastic contamination in the Great Barrier Reef. We link this data with hydrodynamic modelling to improve our understanding of potential sources and sinks of these small plastic fragments.
AIMS’ work also helps determine the risk that microplastics and other contaminants pose to tropical organisms and marine ecosystems. Our ecotoxicologists use laboratory studies to establish the concentration levels that can cause ‘ecologically relevant’ effects. This information contributes to water quality guideline values and informs ecological risk assessments.
|Known and likely sources