Articles | Volume 16, issue 5
Ocean Sci., 16, 1317–1336, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-16-1317-2020
Ocean Sci., 16, 1317–1336, 2020
https://doi.org/10.5194/os-16-1317-2020

Research article 30 Oct 2020

Research article | 30 Oct 2020

Beaching patterns of plastic debris along the Indian Ocean rim

Mirjam van der Mheen et al.

Data sets

GOFS 3.1: 41-layer HYCOM + NCODA Global 1/12° Reanalysis HYCOM Consortium for Data Assimilative Modeling https://www.hycom.org/data/glbv0pt08/expt-53ptx

GSHHG A Global Self-consistent, Hierarchical, High-resolution Geography Database Paul Wessel https://www.soest.hawaii.edu/pwessel/gshhg/

Dipole Mode Index (DMI) The State of the ocean climate http://stateoftheocean.osmc.noaa.gov/sur/ind/dmi.php

Indian Ocean beaching Mirjam van der Mheen https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.4138759

Video supplement

Beaching plastics along the Indian Ocean rim at 8-km from the coastline with probability of 0.05/5 days Mirjam van der Mheen, Erik van Sebille, and Charitha Pattiaratchi https://doi.org/10.5446/47056

Beaching plastics along the Indian Ocean rim at 8-km from the coastline with probability of 0.50/5 days Mirjam van der Mheen, Erik van Sebille, and Charitha Pattiaratchi https://doi.org/10.5446/47057

Beaching plastics along the Indian Ocean rim at 8-km from the coastline with probability of 0.95/5 days Mirjam van der Mheen, Erik van Sebille, and Charitha Pattiaratchi https://doi.org/10.5446/47058

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Short summary
A large percentage of global ocean plastic enters the Indian Ocean through rivers, but the fate of these plastics is generally unknown. In this paper, we use computer simulations to show that floating plastics beach and end up on coastlines throughout the Indian Ocean. Coastlines where a lot of plastic enters the ocean are heavily affected by beaching plastic, but plastics can also beach far from the source on remote islands and countries that contribute little plastic pollution of their own.