Domestic panorama 2018/4

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Author: Gábor Szunyogh

 

Danube analysis: 50 microplastic particles per cubic meter

 

Of the Hungarian rivers investigated so far, the most microplastics were found in the Danube: 50 particles per cubic meter. During the Tiny Plastic Puzzle project, following the investigation of the river Tisza, the microplastic contamination of the Danube and its tributaries has been measured by WESSLING Hungary Kft. and its partners. In the opinion of the researchers and expert proficient in the practice of environmental protection and laboratory analyses, presented at the project conclusion conference held at the WESSLING Knowledge Center on October 10, 2018, the results of the measurements are disturbing. The analyses performed so far were only the first steps: we are facing a global challenge, and so coordinated measures are needed to reverse the contamination process caused by microplastics that enter our environment.

The results of earlier samplings and laboratory analyses have already drawn attention to the fact that, similarly to the findings of European measurements, the presence of microplastics in Hungarian surface waters can also be proven. According to the measurements of WESSLING, the river Tisza contained 4.9 plastic particles larger than 300 µm per cubic meter at Dombrád, while 23.1 particles were found in the sample taken from Lake Tisza. The plastic particles detected were typically made of the widely used polyethylene, polypropylene and polystyrene.

 

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