The Big Microplastics Survey reaches schools in North Norfolk
A small but valuable step to help understand the scale and impact of microplastics
Set up as a citizen science project, the survey involves the collection of plastic pieces found on the beach within the ‘micro’ and ‘meso’ range (from 1mm – 25mm in size). This is the size range that is most easily ingested by seabirds and medium sized fish.
The main aim of this global survey is to provide valuable research data to assist with the development of a future solution to tackle this huge problem.
Working with schools
The sessions that Norfolk Rivers Trust are running with schools include a classroom-based discussion on what microplastics are, where they come from (including along river systems) and the harm that they can cause to the environment, followed by a sampling session on the beach. As well as carrying out surveys, the children then get the chance to sort the plastic into similar types and colours, where they record the results and send off the samples to the University of Portsmouth for further laboratory research e.g. weighing the samples accurately and using technology to identify what the plastics are.
It is hoped that a minimum of 40 samples will be collected during these sessions, which will continue until the end of July 2019.
Any member of the public can take part in this important citizen science project. Find out more and sign up here.