Citizen science and paddle surf to study microplastic pollution in Barcelona's coastline

IMAGE: Researchers developed a net to collect samples through a paddle surfboard.
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Credit: Anna Sanchez-Vidal, UNIVERSITY OF BARCELONA
A team of the University of Barcelona has studied for the first time the presence of microplastics in the coasts of Barcelona, thanks to the participation of the citizens gathering scientific samples. The study, published in the journal Science of Total Environment, is a pioneer citizen science study worldwide, since it analyses a hard-access area for oceanography research ships, due its too shallow depth and chance to run aground, and the danger it involves regarding swimmers.
To sample the unexplored area, researchers Elsa Camins, Miquel Canals, William P. de Haan and Anna Sanchez-Vidal, from the consolidated Research Group on Marine Geosciences of the Faculty of Earth Sciences of the UB, in collaboration of the Spanish delegate of the NGO Surfrider Europe, worked on a net which can be dragged by a paddle…

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