Baseline for beached marine debris on Sand Island, Midway Atoll

Marine Pollution Bulletin
By: , and 



Baseline measurements were made of the amount and weight of beached marine debris on Sand Island, Midway Atoll, June 2008–July 2010. On 23 surveys, 32,696 total debris objects (identifiable items and pieces) were collected; total weight was 740.4 kg. Seventy-two percent of the total was pieces; 91% of the pieces were made of plastic materials. Pieces were composed primarily of polyethylene and polypropylene. Identifiable items were 28% of the total; 88% of the identifiable items were in the fishing/aquaculture/shipping-related and beverage/household products-related categories. Identifiable items were lowest during April–August, while pieces were at their lowest during June–August. Sites facing the North Pacific Gyre received the most debris and proportionately more pieces. More debris tended to be found on Sand Island when the Subtropical Convergence Zone was closer to the Atoll. This information can be used for potential mitigation and to understand the impacts of large-scale events such as the 2011 Japanese tsunami.


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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Baseline for beached marine debris on Sand Island, Midway Atoll
Series title Marine Pollution Bulletin
DOI 10.1016/j.marpolbul.2012.04.001
Volume 64
Issue 8
Year Published 2012
Language English
Publisher Elsevier
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 4 p.
First page 1726
Last page 1729
Country United States
Other Geospatial Midway Atoll
Online Only (Y/N) N
Additional Online Files (Y/N) N
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
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