Global Plastics monitoring project, beach sampling
TABIO with support from IPEN and under the supervision of Agenda for Responsible Environment is among the 23 NGOs that participated in the sampling of beached plastic pellets under the project on IPEN Global plastics monitoring project, beach sampling which started in 2019. This work is contributing greatly to increase the available data on chemicals in this type of plastic pollution. This project started by implementing the following activities: Selecting the beach for sample collection. Two beach sites namely Sunrise and Coco Beach in Dar es Salaam were selected for sample collection. Plastic polyethylene pellets were collected from the sites of which a minimum of 100 pellets were collected. The collected sample pellets were almost 5mm in size. After sample collection exercise was over, they were packed and labelled and thereafter shipped outside the country via DHL for analysis.
The pellets samples were analyzed for content of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and benzotriazole UV-stabilizers (BUVs). The sampled pellets contained total PCB concentrations of 141-1448 ng/g, which puts them into the moderately-extremely polluted category, according to the classification by International Pellet Watch. The pellets also contained 10/10 analyzed BUVs of a total concentration of 808-3045 ng/g. This puts them in the higher range compared to the other pellet samples.
It is well known that PCBs are listed in as POPs under the Stockholm convention and they are classified as carcinogenic. Common sources nowadays include legacy contamination in the environment, unintentional production, leaking from old electric transformers and disposal and recycling. PCBs have several negative effects on human health and the environment. As for Benzotriazole UV-stabilizers (BUVs), they are a group of UV-stabilizers that are added to plastics, coatings and cosmetics. Although data are scarce on some types of BUVs several BUVs can bioaccumulate and are persistent in the environment. Some of them are also known as endocrine disrupting chemicals.
Plastic pellets results made TABIO to target, media, civil society organizations and the general public for awareness creation. In accomplishing the planned activities of reporting the finding of the plastic samples analysis, the following events were organized:
Plastic pellets collected in 2019.
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