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MICROPLASTICS COMMUNITY SCIENCE PILOT PROJECT

A partnership with Environment and Climate Change Canada

 
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NEW TECHNOLOGY AND TOOLS FOR COMMUNITY SCIENCE

In partnership with Environment and Climate Change Canada, Ocean Diagnostics Inc. (ODI) led a community science pilot study to develop and test scientific protocols and high technology for community scientists applications. Using the tools and technologies, volunteers generated microplastic pollution data from southern Vancouver Island to inform local solutions.

 

READ THE REPORTS

Download, read and use the project reports to support your own projects and advocacy

COMMUNITY SCIENTISTS HELP TO IDENTIFY LOCAL PRIORITIES FOR MICROPLASTICS: A PILOT STUDY ON VANCOUVER ISLAND, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA

Scientific Report

COMMUNITY SCIENCE AND
TECHNOLOGY TO TACKLE
MICROPLASTIC POLLUTION

Public-facing report

 
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THE PILOT STUDY

In 2021, over 50 local volunteers tested and validated community science microplastics beach sampling protocols and tools. For six months, they collected samples from 10 sandy beaches on Southern Vancouver Island. The particles were analyzed in ODI's labs using the Saturna Imaging System  and Mariana data platform. 

 
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OVER 81 PER CENT OF MICROPLASTIC IN THE GREATER VICTORIA REGION IS FOAM

Study Outcomes

  1. The study resulted in the most extensive microplastic pollution dataset on British Columbia shorelines. 

  2. 81% of plastic particles found on beaches in the Greater Victoria Region were foam, primarily polystyrene. 

  3. The greatest number of microplastics were found at beaches surrounded by marinas, relative to those that were not. 

 

COMMUNITY SCIENCE TOOLKIT

The project also resulted in the development of a Community Science Toolkit

The Toolkit includes: 

  • Digital science-based educational resources on microplastic pollution, community science and STEM  

  • A microplastics field protocol to sample local sandy beaches, including coasts, lakes and rivers 

  • The Saturna Imaging System to analyze physical microplastic particles

  • Mariana open-access data portal to upload the data

  • Digital data interpretation and advocacy tools to use your data to create change 

The Toolkit can be used by communities and schools around the world to collect local microplastic pollution data to inform solutions, while contributing to global microplastic data sets.  

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"I enjoyed being able to get involved within my community and gain a deeper understanding of what’s happening to our local beaches."

-Taya Holmes, Community Science Pilot Project Volunteer

 

MEDIA INQUIRIES

Please email us to connect with our media team.

 
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