The amount of plastic waste is increasing in the Black Sea. These are the observations of scientists at the Institute of Oceanology in Varna. They returned from an expedition, on which they examined the quality of the water.
The Danube River is the largest polluter of the Black Sea. Plastic waste in half of Europe is being discharged into Romanian territorial waters and is being collected in the Durankulak area and Cape Kaliakra because of its southern flow. Ship traffic also generates waste. Plastic islands are observed along the route of vessels in the Black Sea.
Results from tests of the water quality are also worrying. Water quality is important for the Black Sea ecosystem.
Prof. Kremena Stefanova, Institute of Oceanology-Varna, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, explains that the results so far are between moderate and good in terms of coastal waters and by indicators such as phytoplankton, demersal habitats and macroalgae. Self-purification of the sea is difficult. This is an organism that really strives for some kind of balance.
The surveys are part of Bulgaria’s commitment to the European Union for monitoring the Black Sea. Due to underfunding, however, ocean scientists have been able to complete only one-third of the required expeditions.