Aquatic Ecosystems

Microplastics (MP) provide a unique and extensive surface for microbial colonization in aquatic ecosystems. The formation of microorganism-microplastic complexes, such as biofilms, maximizes the degradation of organic matter and horizontal gene transfer. In this context, MP affect the structure and function of microbial communities, which in turn render the physical and chemical fate of MP. This new paradigm generates challenges for microbiology, ecology, and ecotoxicology.
Elsevier, TrAC - Trends in Analytical Chemistry, Volume 109, December 2018
Microplastics are emerging persistent contaminants of increasing concern. Although microplastics have been extensively detected in aquatic environments, their occurrence in soil ecosystems remains largely unexplored. This review focused on recent progress in analytical methods, pollution characteristics and ecological effects of microplastics in soils. In spite of the presence of microplastics in soils, no standardized methods are available for the quantification. Uniform protocols including microplastic extraction and identification are urgently needed to develop.
Microplastics pollution in aquatic ecosystems has aroused increasing global concern, leading to an explosive growth of studies regarding microplastics published in the past few years. To date, there is still a lack of standardized methodologies used for the detection of microplastics within environmental samples, thus hampering comparison of the reported data.
Global food security is a priority for the future development agenda of the United Nations. Given the high dependence of the modern global food production system on the continuous supply of commercial phosphorus (P) fertilizers, the goal of achieving global food security could be hampered by any form of paucity of the global P resource. P is a finite, non-substitutable, non-renewable, and geographically restricted resource. The anthropogenic influences on this critical resource are likely to pose a number of challenges to its sustainability.