About this Research Topic
Bays are portions of the ocean partly enclosed by the land, varying in size, shape, and depth. Many important trading centers such as New York, San Francisco, Tokyo and Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao of China are located on the bays. Bay area is generally one of the environments with the highest diversity in the world – over 15,000 species of sea life. The bay ecosystem is vital to our national economy, providing valuable natural resources, abundant seafood, extraordinary beaches, as well as rich cultural heritages. However, bay ecosystems have been increasingly affected by the anthropogenic activities that bring tremendous pressures, causing significant changes to these regional ecosystems.
Plastic pollution has been found a worldwide problem across including bay areas. Mass production of plastics and inappropriate disposal lead to their accumulation in the bay, and thus the bay areas are considered as one of sinks for plastic debris. Large pieces of plastic debris are commonly found in the shorelines and water surface of the bay areas. And such plastic debris may be gradually degraded after a long time. In fact, a majority of plastic debris falls into the category of microplastics (MPs) which are < 5 mm by size. What’s more, these MPs can adsorb a wide range of contaminants that can be ingested by organisms and introduced into the food web. Meanwhile, MPs may release potentially toxic substances such as plasticizers, flame retardants and antimicrobial agents during their weathering and degradation. Explorations on these phenomena are actively going on.
This Research Topic aims to collect and report state-of-the-art information on various topics of plastic / microplastics / nanoplastics including their pollutions, characteristics, and environmental fates in the bay areas around the world. The information will be critical for scientists, business leaders, legislators, and the public to explore and develop solutions that lessen the plastic pollution.
We welcome manuscripts on the following subtopics, but are not limited to:
1. Occurrence and characterization of plastic particles in the bay areas
2. Environmental behaviors and biogeochemical processes of MPs in the bay areas
3. New sampling and analytical methodologies for MPs identification
4. New business approaches for plastic waste recycling, and regulation of plastic pollution
This Research Topic is organized in collaboration with the First Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macau Greater Bay Area Symposium on Marine Plastic Pollution Prevention and Control.
Keywords: Macroplastic, microplastic, nanoplastic, sensing, plastic debris, marine litter
Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.