Title: Seabed litter distribution in the high seas of the Flemish Pass area (NW Atlantic)
Responsible Partner: IEO Vigo
Date: March 2021
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Description: Seabed litter of the Flemish Pass area (NW Atlantic Ocean) was analysed and described using data from the EU-Spain groundfish survey (2006-2017 period). This study presents baseline information on seabed litter in this area. The Flemish Pass is located in areas beyond national jurisdiction within the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization Regulatory Area Division 3L. A total of 1169 valid bottom trawl hauls were analysed (104-1478 m depth). Litter was found in 8.3% of the hauls, with mean densities of 1.4±0.2 items km–2 and 10.6±5.2 kg km–2. An increasing pattern with depth was found, the highest densities of seabed litter being identified in the deepest areas located in the Flemish Pass channel and down the northeastern flank of the Grand Bank. Fishing was found to be the main source of marine litter, and 61.9% of the hauls with litter presence showed litter included in the fisheries-related litter category. Whereas in most cases the litter was composed of small fragments of rope, in other cases it was composed of entire fishing gears such as traps. Plastics, metal and other anthropogenic litter were the next most abundant categories, accounting for 18.6%, 16.5% and 12.4% of the total, respectively.
Title: Overview of marine litter status in the Atlantic Area: beach litter
Responsible Partner: CEDRE
Description: This report presents a characterisation of beach litter pollution along the Atlantic Area shoreline at different relevant geographical scales (beach level, country level, OSPAR region level and Atlantic Area level). Litter abundance, composition and trends is assessed over the time period 2016-2019. Results confirm beach litter is abundant in the Atlantic Area, indicating measures are needed to reduce pollution, especially plastics which represent the majority of litter observed. Finally, gaps hindering a precise assessment of beach litter pollutions are identified and some recommandations to overcome these gaps are proposed
Title: Review of Economic Sectors Impacted by Marine Litter in the Atlantic Area
Responsible Partner: CEFAS
Description: This report reviews the various forms of marine litter and explores their impacts on different economic sectors making use of an ecosystem services approach.