This call intends to increase the knowledge about the best analytical methods for identifying microplastics, their distribution in marine systems and their eco-toxicological effects on marine organisms.
Microplastics are persistent, ubiquitous and their high potential to cause physical harm and toxicological effect is being highlighted in various studies. Modes and mechanisms of microplastic toxic action have been indicated for different biological systems, and microplastics have been identified as an artificial substrate which can affect ecological processes, biodiversity and facilitate transport of invasive species as well as pathogens.
However, the knowledge about the origin, size range, abundance and spatial variability of micro-plastics in marine systems is still limited. The toxicological and ecological effects on marine organisms and ultimately on human health is also insufficiently studied. Hence, for the protection of marine habitats and the safety of marine resources and seafood a trans-disciplinary European research initiative is necessary.
Therefore, a joint call for proposals is launched by the Joint programming initiative (JPI) OCEANS, comprising three main themes:
Each participant in a funded consortium will be funded by his or her national partner organisation. A total amount of up to €6.35 million has been blocked by the funding partners from Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden for this call.