Journal of Hazardous Materials ( IF 9.038 ) Pub Date : 2021-02-22 , DOI: 10.1016/j.jhazmat.2021.125477 Xiaohui Wang; Kai Liu; Lixin Zhu; Changjun Li; Zhangyu Song; Daoji Li
The presence of microplastics (MPs) in the atmosphere is a global concern because of its environmental and health impacts; however, the monsoonal transport of atmospheric MPs has not yet been investigated. To fully understand the effect of the monsoon on atmospheric MP transport, we conducted a study along the southeast coast of China during the East Asian summer monsoon (EASM). We found that the EASM transports atmospheric MPs back onto the continent at a flux of up to 212.977–213.433 kg/EASM/year. The backward trajectory and wind field results indicate that the EASM provides an effective MP transport pathway from Vietnam, the Philippines, and Malaysia to southeastern China. This suggests that only some of the airborne MPs over the ocean enter the marine ecosystem. The average abundance of atmospheric MPs over the sampling area was 0.39 items/100 m3 (0.39 ± 0.43 items/100 m3) during the EASM season, with high variability among the sampling sites. This study improves our understanding of the impact of the EASM on atmospheric MP transport, which can help quantify the contributions of atmospheric MPs to marine or terrestrial ecosystems.