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J Environ Anal Health Toxicol > Volume 27(2); 2024 > Article
Journal of Environmental Analysis, Health and Toxicology 2024;27(2):96-111.
DOI: https://doi.org/10.36278/jeaht.27.2.96    Published online June 30, 2024.
A Study on Distribution of Characteristics of Microplastic in the Han-River Watershed
Yejin Choi, Hyoyoung Lee, Hyemi Moon, Jaewoo Kim, Sunku Park
KOTITI Testing & Research Institute, Gwacheon-si, 13840, Korea
한강 수계에서의 미세플라스틱의 분포 특성 연구
최예진, 이효영, 문혜미, 김재우, 박선구
KOTITI 시험연구원
Correspondence:  Sunku Park, Tel: 82-, Fax: 82-, 
Received: 22 March 2024   • Revised: 16 April 2024   • Accepted: 8 May 2024
Microplastic pollution in the marine environment is a global issue. Recently, in South Korea, there has been active research on the establishment of testing methods and investigation of distribution characteristics of microplastics not only in marine environments but also in freshwater systems. In particular, it is necessary to study the distribution of microplastics such as rivers and lakes, which are drinking water sources, to affect the water quality environment, management, and countermeasures. This study identified the distribution of microplastics in the mainstream and tributary of the Han River water system. The freshwater, sediment, and biological species samples were pre-treated accordingly, and microplastics larger than 20 µm were analyzed using μ-FT-IR. As a result of the inter-laboratory study, in the same way as in this study, it was possible to confirm that the trusted recovery rate was 63.6%. The survey results indicated that the number of microplastics per location ranged from 1,173 to 8,940 particles/L in freshwater samples, 3,800 to 192,000 particles/kg in sediment samples, and 34 to 384 particles/individual in fish samples. The most commonly found microplastic materials were PP, PE, and PTFE. The size distribution of plastics appeared in the following order: 45~100 µm, 100~300 µm, 20~45 µm, and greater than 300 µm, with predominantly fragmented shapes observed.
Key Words: Microplastics, Freshwater environments, surface water, sediment, fish


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