Microplastic (MP) contamination is ubiquitous and widespread in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, including remote areas. However, information on the presence and distribution of MPs in high-mountain ecosystems, including glaciers, is still limited. The present study aimed at investigating presence, spatial distribution, and patterns of contamination of MPs on three glaciers of the Ortles-Cevedale massif (Central Alps, Northern Italy) with different anthropic pressures, i.e., the Forni, Cedec and Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glaciers. Samples of supraglacial debris were randomly collected from the glaciers and MPs were isolated. The mean amount (±SE) of MPs measured in debris from Forni, Cedec and Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glaciers was 0.033 ± 0.007, 0.025 ± 0.009, and 0.265 ± 0.027 MPs g−1 dry weight, respectively. The level and pattern of MP contamination from the Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glacier were significantly different from those of the other glaciers. No significant spatial gradient in MP distribution along the ablation areas of the glaciers was observed, suggesting that MPs do not accumulate toward the glacier snout. Our results confirmed that local contamination can represent a relevant source of MPs in glacier ecosystems experiencing high anthropic pressure, while long-range transport can be the main source on other glaciers.

Crosta, A., De Felice, B., Antonioli, D., Chiarcos, R., Perin, E., Ortenzi, M., et al. (2022). Microplastic contamination of supraglacial debris differs among glaciers with different anthropic pressures. SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, 851(Part 2, 10 December 2022) [10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.158301].

Microplastic contamination of supraglacial debris differs among glaciers with different anthropic pressures

Pittino, F;Franzetti, A;Ambrosini, R
;
2022

Abstract

Microplastic (MP) contamination is ubiquitous and widespread in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, including remote areas. However, information on the presence and distribution of MPs in high-mountain ecosystems, including glaciers, is still limited. The present study aimed at investigating presence, spatial distribution, and patterns of contamination of MPs on three glaciers of the Ortles-Cevedale massif (Central Alps, Northern Italy) with different anthropic pressures, i.e., the Forni, Cedec and Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glaciers. Samples of supraglacial debris were randomly collected from the glaciers and MPs were isolated. The mean amount (±SE) of MPs measured in debris from Forni, Cedec and Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glaciers was 0.033 ± 0.007, 0.025 ± 0.009, and 0.265 ± 0.027 MPs g−1 dry weight, respectively. The level and pattern of MP contamination from the Ebenferner-Vedretta Piana glacier were significantly different from those of the other glaciers. No significant spatial gradient in MP distribution along the ablation areas of the glaciers was observed, suggesting that MPs do not accumulate toward the glacier snout. Our results confirmed that local contamination can represent a relevant source of MPs in glacier ecosystems experiencing high anthropic pressure, while long-range transport can be the main source on other glaciers.
Articolo in rivista - Articolo scientifico
Anthropic impact; High-mountain ecosystems; Microplastics; Supraglacial debris;
English
27-ago-2022
2022
851
Part 2, 10 December 2022
158301
none
Crosta, A., De Felice, B., Antonioli, D., Chiarcos, R., Perin, E., Ortenzi, M., et al. (2022). Microplastic contamination of supraglacial debris differs among glaciers with different anthropic pressures. SCIENCE OF THE TOTAL ENVIRONMENT, 851(Part 2, 10 December 2022) [10.1016/j.scitotenv.2022.158301].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10281/396893
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