Microplastics are emerging pollutants of global importance. Implementing mitigation strategies and evaluating the effectiveness of human interventions require an understanding of the temporal development of microplastics emitted into environmental compartments. Recent studies suggest that abrasion of tires and degradation of plastics in the open environment are major causes of microplastic contaminations. Extreme events like floods and tsunamis also have a huge impact on plastic transport. How does the consumption level of plastic products affect the emission amount of microplastics in the past? Which effective measures have industrial and municipal entities adopted to mitigate the pollution caused by microplastics? How will the amount of microplastics in our environment likely develop in the upcoming decades, according to prognostic models based on current legislative regulations on the usage of plastics? These are examples of topics the scientific community has been intensively focused on and answers to those questions are thought-provoking.

Ziel der Arbeit

By reviewing literature data of mass and concentration development of microplastic contaminants in the environment, we aim to recognize the severity of the issue and its resulting factors. The goal of analyzing prognostic information critically is to form an attentive consciousness about the potential threat and a thorough overview of the progression of microplastic emissions in the near future.


The work is expected to be done by primarily reviewing scientific publications and reports, summarizing consistencies and cross-checking discrepancies of information, and finally formulating observations and prognoses comprehensively.


Literature research, Statistics, Interdisciplinary considerations


Natalie Orlowski, Sijia Gao


Dr. Natalie Orlowski:; Tel. 0761 – 203 9283; M.Sc. Sijia Gao:; Tel. 0761 – 203 3529




  • Boucher, Julien, and Damien Friot. Primary microplastics in the oceans: a global evaluation of sources. Vol. 10. Gland, Switzerland: Iucn, 2017.
  • Geyer, Roland, Jenna R. Jambeck, and Kara Lavender Law. „Production, use, and fate of all plastics ever made.“ Science advances 3.7 (2017): e1700782.
  • Kvale, K., et al. „The global biological microplastic particle sink.“ Scientific reports 10.1 (2020): 1-12.
  • Talvitie, Julia, et al. „Solutions to microplastic pollution–Removal of microplastics from wastewater effluent with advanced wastewater treatment technologies.“ Water research 123 (2017): 401-407.
  • Prata, Joana Correia. „Microplastics in wastewater: State of the knowledge on sources, fate and solutions.“ Marine pollution bulletin 129.1 (2018): 262-265.
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