Marine litter in the water column of the North Sea (MARLINS) (39561)

Project Details


MARLINS (Marine litter in the water column of the North Sea) will utilize a unique collection of marine litter, sampled in connection with annual herring larvae surveys, to investigate the composition, amount, distribution and potential sources of marine litter in the North Sea. In contrast to most other investigations on marine litter which are largely focussed on beach surveys, bottom trawl surveys or sampling in surface waters, the present project will provide information about marine litter in the entire water column.

The main output of the project will be a marine litter database and a detailed description of the composition of the marine litter by different categories, colours and sizes as well as maps of the spatial distribution, amount and where applicable weight of the different litter categories in the entire North Sea area. In addition, drift model runs will be conducted to further investigate potential source and sink areas of the litter.

The knowledge gained from the project is expected to be relevant for various stakeholders and authorities such as Ministries of Environment and Fisheries, nature conservation organizations, tourism organizations as well as the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) and the scientific community in general, in particular in relation to the Marine Strategy Framework Directive. For example, information about the most likely sources of litter and identification of potential source areas for certain litter types may allow responsible authorities and stakeholders to investigate if actions can be taken to reduce or entirely prevent the continuing, future introduction of certain types of litter into the marine environment by diminishing or completely shutting down the sources.

DTU Aqua, National Institute of Aquatic Resources (coordinator)

This project is funded by Velux Fonden.

Research area: Fish Biology
Research area: Ecosystem based Marine Management
Effective start/end date01/10/201830/09/2020


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