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Microplastics in Freshwater Environments and Implications for Aquatic Ecosystems: A Mini Review and Future Directions in Ghana

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Document pages: 17 pages

Abstract: Microplastics have a constant effect on aquatic life and are constantly being researched, they have been gradually observed and analysed in marine and freshwater ecosystems, and possible effects in freshwater ecosystems are rising in importance. A literature review has been completed to outline the present state of awareness of microplastics in freshwater ecosystems in Ghana; in particular, the environmental fate, sources, effects in aquatic life and implications on their environments. Although we found that there was a dramatic increase in research and publications on these subjects, relatively few studies had examined the sources, fate and impacts of microplastics in the water bodies of Ghana and there was insufficient data on the extent of microplastics in freshwaters in Ghana. Studies in which Ghanaian waterbodies had quantified microplastics were considered of the greatest importance. We further assess current depth of knowledge of microplastics in aquatic ecosystems in which Ghanaian ecosystem-specific information was not readily available. Although this study may not be a comprehensive overview of the findings, it is assumed that this is an objective representation of the existing state of awareness about microplastics in the aquatic environment in Ghana.

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