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Marine Litter in Nordic waters

image of Marine Litter in Nordic waters

This report provides an overview of the currently available data from studies on marine litter in the Nordic countries. This covers various field studies on amount, distribution, characteristics and impact of macro- and micro-litter particles. The data reported can provide a good basis for prioritisation of activities, especially having the establishment of marine litter indicators for EU’s Marine Strategy Framework Directive monitoring and national management plans in the Nordic countries in mind.

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Summary

In recent years there has been an increased focus on environmental problems arising from litter pollution in the oceans after various studies have described instances of vast amounts of litter including microscopic particles consisting of plastic debris and other synthetic materials. International institutions such as EU, OSPAR, HELCOM and UN have identified marine litter as an important issue that should be prioritized both in terms of knowledge building and the development of environmental indicators that can be used for characterization of the environmental quality. In Europe, marine litter is now high on the environmental agenda, especially after the implementation of the Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) with obligations for all the EU member states. Subsequently, marine litter has also received increasing attention in the Nordic countries.

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