Environmental Science and Pollution Research

, Volume 25, Issue 10, pp 9293–9310 | Cite as

Mitigation measures to avert the impacts of plastics and microplastics in the marine environment (a review)

  • Oluniyi Solomon Ogunola
  • Olawale Ahmed Onada
  • Augustine Eyiwunmi Falaye
Review Article


The increasing demand for and reliance on plastics as an everyday item, and rapid rise in their production and subsequent indiscriminate disposal, rise in human population and industrial growth, have made the material an important environmental concern and focus of interest of many research. Historically, plastic production has increased tremendously to over 250 million tonnes by 2009 with an annual increased rate of 9%. In 2015, the global consumption of plastic materials was reported to be > 300 million tonnes and is expected to surge exponentially. Because plastic polymers are ubiquitous, highly resistant to degradation, the influx of these persistent, complex materials is a risk to human and environmental health. Because microplastics are principally generated from the weathering or breakdown of larger plastics (macroplastics), it is noteworthy and expedient to discuss in detail, expatiate, and tackle this main source. Macro- and microplastic pollution has been reported on a global scale from the poles to the equator. The major problem of concern is that they strangulate and are ingested by a number of aquatic biota especially the filter feeders, such as molluscs, mussels, oysters, from where it enters the food chain and consequently could lead to physical and toxicological effects on aquatic organisms and human being as final consumers. To this end, in order to minimise the negative impacts posed by plastic pollution (macro- and microplastics), a plethora of strategies have been developed at various levels to reduce and manage the plastic wastes. The objective of this paper is to review some published literature on management measures of plastic wastes to curb occurrence and incidents of large- and microplastics pollution in the marine environments.


Microplastics Rise in plastic production and human population Indiscriminate disposal Environmental concern Mitigation or management measures 



The first author would like to appreciate Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD), with code number 91534748, desk 431, for full scholarship and financial support during his master’s degree program at the University of Bremen, Germany. Special thanks to Dr. Thava Palanisami, University of Newcastle, Australia for proof-reading, insights, suggestions and comments to the whole write up.

Authors’ contributions

All authors contributed significantly to sample collections, data analyses, write up, insights and comments.

Compliance with ethical standards

This article does not contain any studies with human participants performed by any of the authors.

Ethics approval and consent to participate

This research did not involve human participants.

Consent for publication

All authors have agreed to publish this article for the use of scientific communities and the general public at large.

Availability of data and material

The data and materials used are available with the first author and online.

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Oluniyi Solomon Ogunola
    • 1
  • Olawale Ahmed Onada
    • 2
  • Augustine Eyiwunmi Falaye
    • 2
  1. 1.MSc International Studies in Aquatic Tropical EcologyUniversity of BremenBremenGermany
  2. 2.Aquaculture and Fisheries ManagementUniversity of IbadanIbadanNigeria

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