The Impacts of Plastic Pollution on Coral Reefs and its Correlation to Coral Cover

Rasmus Kryger, Adriana Samanta Hidalgo, Hanne-Marie Naja Katrine Pedersen & Ana Garcia Mochales Ortiz

Studenteropgave: Basisprojekt

Abstrakt

This report is about the impacts of plastic pollution on coral reefs. Coral reefs are an important ecosystem as they provide for a biodiverse habitat and economic benefits to society. The major impact plastic has on coral reefs is that it functions as a vector, assisting with the spread of diseases. The distribution of marine litter and coral cover in the Philippines, Australia, and Belize are analyzed to see if there is any kind of correlation. The data collected along the coast of one of the islands in Central Visayas from the Marine Conservation Philippines is divided by beach- and dive clean-up. There is more litter on the beach than in the water, and most of it is accumulated near the locations with the most tourists. Though the data does not correlate with the tourist season. In the Philippines, the data reveals that the majority of the litter consists of plastic while only an average of 25\% coral cover was recorded. A similar result was seen in Australia (with a coral cover of about 17\%), though the coral cover slightly increased when looking at Belize even though most of the marine litter collected is plastic. The ocean is an open system, therefore, it is hard to analyze how plastic affects corals when other stressors are also present in these ecosystems.

UddannelserBasis - International Naturvidenskabelig Bacheloruddannelse, (Bachelor uddannelse) Basis
SprogEngelsk
Udgivelsesdato17 dec. 2018
Antal sider46
VejledereKristian Syberg