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Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste (2022)

Chapter:Appendix D: Estuary Table

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×

TABLE D-1 Peer-reviewed Studies in Which Plastic Waste Was Measured in Estuaries and Rivers of the United States

Study Locale Sampling Dates Environmental Matrix (N = number of sites)
Moore, Lattin, and Zellers 2011 Los Angeles and San Gabriel Rivers Two occupations: Nov 22 or Dec 28, 2004, and Apr 11, 2005 Surface, mid-depth, and bottom samples (N = 3, two occupations)
Yonkos et al. 2014 Bikker et al. 2020 Chesapeake Bay Chesapeake Bay ~Monthly between July and Dec 2011 Single occupation collected Aug 31–Sep 18, 2015 4 estuarine tributaries, surface water (N = 60) Estuary surface water (N = 30)
Davis and Murphy 2015 McCormick et al. 2016 Salish Sea & Inside Passage (WA) 9 rivers in Chicago metropolitan area (IL, IN) 2011 (N = 62), 2012 (N = 15) Single occupation collected July 10–Oct 13, 2014 Estuary surface water (N = 77) Stream surface water (N = 9, each site with 4 replicates at both locations upstream and downstream of wastewater treatment plant [WWTP] outfall site)
Hoellein et al. 2017 North Shore Channel (urban waterway, Chicago, IL) Aug 7, 2017 Channel surface water and benthic sediment (N = 5, 4 replicates of each sample type at each location)
Baldwin, Corsi, and Mason 2016 29 Great Lakes tributaries (6 states) Apr 2014–Apr 2015, each tributary sampled 3–4 times Surface water (N = 107)
Sutton et al. 2016 San Francisco Bay Single occupation collected on 2 days in Jan 2015 Estuary surface water (N = 9)
Sutton et al. 2019 San Francisco Bay and Tomales Bay Two occupations (wet/dry conditions) Estuary surface water (N = 17) and sediments (N = 20)
Miller et al. 2017 Hudson River (NY) Single occupation collected in June and Oct 2016 River surface water (N = 142)
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Sampling Method Abundance, as Reported Notes
Manta net and hand nets (0.333- to 0.8-mm mesh) 0 to 12,932 particles/m3; 0 to 121 g/m3 Sampled during dry period (Nov/Dec) and within 24 hours of 0.25 in. of rainfall (Apr)
Manta net (0.3-mm mesh) Manta net (0.33-mm mesh) From <1.0 to >560 g/km2 0.007 to 1.245 particles/m3 Peaks in abundance after major storm events Not all particles were plastic Polyethylene (PE), polypropylene (PP) most common plastics found
Manta net (0.335-mm mesh) Neuston net (0.333-mm mesh) 0 to >130,000 particles/km2 0.48 (±0.09) to 11.22 (±1.53) particles/m3 Samples dominated by expanded polystyrene (EPS) foam Highly variable particle flux between sites; mainly PE, PP, polystyrene (PS); 7 of 9 sites had higher concentrations downstream of WWTP effluent
Neuston net (0.333 mm), Ponar grab (~0.75–1 L sediment) 1.67 particles/m3 to 10.36 particles/m3 (water); 36 to 1,613 particles/L (sediment) Much higher microplastic abundance in sediment than in surface water; microplastic abundance in water did not vary with increasing distance downstream of WWTP outfall
Neuston net (0.333-mm mesh) 0.05 to 32 particles/m3 Plastics found in all samples. Majority were fibers/lines whose concentrations were not related to watershed attributes or hydrological processes
Manta net (0.333-mm mesh) 15,000 to 2,000,000 particles/km2 Abundances higher in southern bay than central bay
Manta net (0.335-mm mesh), 1-L water grab sample, pumped water sample, sediment grab 2,400 to 6,200,000 particles/km2 in surface water; 0.5 to 60 particles/g dry weight Abundances include microplastics and other microparticles. Surface water samples collected in the wet season had higher concentrations of microplastics than in the dry season.
Water grab samples, filtered on 0.45-μm filter 0 to 12.37 microfibers/L Abundances include microplastics and other microfibers
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Study Locale Sampling Dates Environmental Matrix (N = number of sites)
Gray et al. 2018 Charleston Harbor, Winyah Bay (SC) Single occupation Sea surface microlayer (N = 12), intertidal sediment (N = 10)
Barrows et al. 2018 Gallatin River basin (MT, WY) Sept 2015–June 2017 River surface water (N = 714, occupied seasonally over 2 years at 72 sites)
Kapp and Yeatman 2018 Snake River (WY, ID, OR, WA) 5 repeated sampling periods between June and Aug 2015 River surface water
Cohen et al. 2019 Delaware Bay Apr 21, 28, 2017, and June 12, 13, 2017 Estuary surface water (N = 16, occupied once in Apr and once in June)
McEachern et al. 2019 Tampa Bay (FL) 1–5 months between samples from June 2016 to July 2017 (water); Single occupation, Mar 21–23, 2017 (sediment) Surface water (N = 24; 2 methods), sediment (N = 9)
Lenaker et al. 2019 Milwaukee River Basin 5 sampling trips, May to Sept 2016 (water sampling); June 2016 (sediment) Stream/river/estuary surface water and subsurface water (N = 96), sediment (N = 9)
Christensen et al. 2020 Blacksburg, VA region Single occupation on June 21, 2018 and Aug 31, 2018 River bed, banks, and floodplain sediment from 3 rivers (N = 14)
Bailey et al. 2021 Raritan River and Raritan Bay (NJ) July 26, 2018 (low flow), Apr 11, 2019 (moderate flow), Apr 16, 2019 (high flow) River and estuary surface water (N = 14, some duplicates)
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Sampling Method Abundance, as Reported Notes
4-L sea surface microlayer samples; top 2 cm of sediment in quadrats 0 to 1195.7 ± 193.9 particles/m2 in sediment; 3 to 88 particles/L in water High abundance of suspected tire wear particles (Charleston Harbor)
~1-L water samples 0 to 67.5 particles/L Majority of particles were fibers (80%); microplastic concentration inversely related to river discharge
1.85-L water samples (N = 28); net samples (0.100-mm mesh) (N = 28) 0 to 5.405 particles/L (bulk water samples); 0 to 13.701 particles/m3 (net samples)
Ring plankton net (0.2-mm mesh) 0.19 to 1.24 particles/m3 High spatial/temporal variability
1-L water samples; plankton net (0.33-mm mesh); Shipek grab for sediment 0 to 7.0 particles/L (bulk water samples); 1.2 to 18.1 particles/m3 (net tow samples); 30 to 790 particles/kg (sediment)
Neuston net (0.333-mm mesh); Circular net (0.333-mm) for subsurface; spoons for sediment 0.21 to 19.1 particles/m3 at surface; 0.06 to 4.3 particles/m3 subsurface; 32.9 to 6,229 particles/kg dry weight sediment Concentration of low-density particles decreased with depth; concentration of high-density particles increased with depth
Hand trowel (40 cm × 40 cm area × 4 cm depth) Averages by site ranged from 17 particles/kg to 180 particles/kg; Average concentration was as high or higher in floodplain than in stream channel, and average particle size was also larger
Plankton net (0.080- or 0.150-mm mesh) 0 to 2.75 particles/m3 for 500–2,000 μm size class; 0.38 to 4.71 particles/m3 for 250–500 μm size class
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×

REFERENCES

Bailey, K., K. Sipps, G. K. Saba, G. Arbuckle-Keil, R. J. Chant, and N. L. Fahrenfeld. 2021. “Quantification and composition of microplastics in the Raritan Hudson Estuary: Comparison to pathways of entry and implications for fate.” Chemosphere 272. doi: 10.1016/j.chemosphere.2021.129886.

Baldwin, A. K., S. R. Corsi, and S. A. Mason. 2016. “Plastic debris in 29 Great Lakes tributaries: Relations to watershed attributes and hydrology.” Environ Sci Technol 50 (19):10377-10385. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.6b02917.

Barrows, A. P. W., K. S. Christiansen, E. T. Bode, and T. J. Hoellein. 2018. “A watershed-scale, citizen science approach to quantifying microplastic concentration in a mixed land-use river.” Water Res 147:382-392. doi: 10.1016/j.watres.2018.10.013.

Bikker, J., J. Lawson, S. Wilson, and C. M. Rochman. 2020. “Microplastics and other anthropogenic particles in the surface waters of the Chesapeake Bay.” Mar Pollut Bull 156:111257. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2020.111257.

Christensen, N. D., C. E. Wisinger, L. A. Maynard, N. Chauhan, J. T. Schubert, J. A. Czuba, and J. R. Barone. 2020. “Transport and characterization of microplastics in inland waterways.” J Water Process Eng 38. doi: 10.1016/j.jwpe.2020.101640.

Cohen, J. H., A. M. Internicola, R. A. Mason, and T. Kukulka. 2019. “Observations and simulations of microplastic debris in a tide, wind, and freshwater-driven estuarine environment: The Delaware Bay.” Environ Sci Technol 53 (24):14204-14211. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.9b04814.

Davis, W., III, and A. G. Murphy. 2015. “Plastic in surface waters of the Inside Passage and beaches of the Salish Sea in Washington State.” Mar Pollut Bull 97 (1-2):169-177. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2015.06.019.

Gray, A. D., H. Wertz, R. R. Leads, and J. E. Weinstein. 2018. “Microplastic in two South Carolina estuaries: Occurrence, distribution, and composition.” Mar Pollut Bull 128:223-233. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2018.01.030.

Hoellein, T. J., A. R. McCormick, J. Hittie, M. G. London, J. W. Scott, and J. J. Kelly. 2017. “Longitudinal patterns of microplastic concentration and bacterial assemblages in surface and benthic habitats of an urban river.” Freshwater Sci 36 (3):491-507. doi: 10.1086/693012.

Kapp, K. J., and E. Yeatman. 2018. “Microplastic hotspots in the Snake and Lower Columbia rivers: A journey from the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem to the Pacific Ocean.” Environ Pollut 241:1082-1090. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2018.06.033.

Lenaker, P. L., A. K. Baldwin, S. R. Corsi, S. A. Mason, P. C. Reneau, and J. W. Scott. 2019. “Vertical distribution of microplastics in the water column and surficial sediment from the Milwaukee River Basin to Lake Michigan.” Environ Sci Technol 53 (21):12227-12237. doi: 10.1021/acs.est.9b03850.

McCormick, A. R., T. J. Hoellein, M. G. London, J. Hittie, J. W. Scott, and J. J. Kelly. 2016. “Microplastic in surface waters of urban rivers: Concentration, sources, and associated bacterial assemblages.” Ecosphere 7 (11). doi: 10.1002/ecs2.1556.

McEachern, K., H. Alegria, A. L. Kalagher, C. Hansen, S. Morrison, and D. Hastings. 2019. “Microplastics in Tampa Bay, Florida: Abundance and variability in estuarine waters and sediments.” Mar Pollut Bull 148:97-106. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2019.07.068.

Miller, R. Z., A. J. R. Watts, B. O. Winslow, T. S. Galloway, and A. P. W. Barrows. 2017. “Mountains to the sea: River study of plastic and non-plastic microfiber pollution in the northeast USA.” Mar Pollut Bull 124 (1):245-251. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul. 2017.07.028.

Moore, C. J., G. L. Lattin, and A. F. Zellers. 2011. “Quantity and type of plastic debris flowing from two urban rivers to coastal waters and beaches of Southern California.” J Integr Coast Zone Manag 11 (1):65-73.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×

Sutton, R., S. A. Mason, S. K. Stanek, E. Willis-Norton, I. F. Wren, and C. Box. 2016. “Microplastic contamination in the San Francisco Bay, California, USA.” Mar Pollut Bull 109 (1):230-235. doi: 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2016.05.077.

Sutton, R., A. Franz, A. Gilbreath, D. Lin, L. Miller, M. Sedlak, A. Wong, C. Box, R. Holleman, K. Munno, X. Zhu, C. Rochman. 2019. Understanding Microplastic Levels, Pathways, and Transport in the San Francisco Bay Region. SFEI Contribution No. 950. Richmond, CA: San Francisco Estuary Institute.

Yonkos, L. T., E. A. Friedel, A. C. Perez-Reyes, S. Ghosal, and C. D. Arthur. 2014. “Microplastics in four estuarine rivers in the Chesapeake Bay, U.S.A.” Environ Sci Technol 48 (24):14195-202. doi: 10.1021/es5036317.

Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×

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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
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Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Page241
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Page242
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
Page243
Suggested Citation:"Appendix D: Estuary Table." National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2022. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/26132.
×
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Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste Get This Book
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An estimated 8 million metric tons (MMT) of plastic waste enters the world's ocean each year - the equivalent of dumping a garbage truck of plastic waste into the ocean every minute. Plastic waste is now found in almost every marine habitat, from the ocean surface to deep sea sediments to the ocean's vast mid-water region, as well as the Great Lakes. This report responds to a request in the bipartisan Save Our Seas 2.0 Act for a scientific synthesis of the role of the United States both in contributing to and responding to global ocean plastic waste.

The United States is a major producer of plastics and in 2016, generated more plastic waste by weight and per capita than any other nation. Although the U.S. solid waste management system is advanced, it is not sufficient to deter leakage into the environment. Reckoning with the U.S. Role in Global Ocean Plastic Waste calls for a national strategy by the end of 2022 to reduce the nation's contribution to global ocean plastic waste at every step - from production to its entry into the environment - including by substantially reducing U.S. solid waste generation. This report also recommends a nationally-coordinated and expanded monitoring system to track plastic pollution in order to understand the scales and sources of U.S. plastic waste, set reduction and management priorities, and measure progress.

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