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Mar del Plata, Argentina

Seco Pon J.P.,14 de julio 1425 PA B7600GMI | Becherucci M.E.,14 de julio 1425 PA B7600GMI
Waste Management | Year: 2012

Urban littering is considered an important environmental and public issue globally. This problem is growing considerably within coastal communities of the southern region of South America. The goals of this study were to assess (1) the abundance and composition of urban litter; (2) the spatial and temporal variations of its abundance; and (3) the relationship between the abundance of litter and three anthropogenic variables (i.e. abundance of pedestrians, of parked vehicles, and of trash bins) in Mar del Plata, the most populated coastal city in Argentina. Eighty-eight transects, each covering 1425m 2, were sampled along four sites from April 2008 to March 2009. Results showed 20,336 items (ca. 14items per m 2) of which cigarette butts (33%), papers (31%), and plastics (22%) were the most commonly littered items. Higher amounts of litter were found in an industrial area (city's harbor), while the abundance of litter appeared relatively even throughout the year. Redundancy analysis techniques indicated a high abundance of all three anthropogenic variables associated with the central business district area of the city and an area in close proximity to a major seaside resort, where cigarette butts and papers dominated. This is the first study that has examined spatial and temporal variations of urban litter in a high-density coastal city in Argentina. Our results showed that addressing the problems associated with urban litter must include intensive educational and advertising campaigns directed at pedestrians and owners of parked vehicles, but waste reduction, clean-up operations and law enforcement should be also considered. © 2011.


Becherucci M.E.,14 de julio 1425 PA B7600GMI | Becherucci M.E.,University of Buenos Aires | Seco Pon J.P.,14 de julio 1425 PA B7600GMI | Seco Pon J.P.,CONICET
Waste Management | Year: 2014

Nightlife activities represents an important source of urban litter; the latter often being left behind or abandoned in public places and streets. Mar del Plata is a very important city on the Atlantic coast of Argentina and is the main tourism destination in the South Atlantic region of South America. However, few studies on urban litter related to nightlife activities have been conducted in the area. Here we assessed ( i) the abundance and composition of litter, and ( ii) the spatial and temporal variations of its abundance, diversity, richness and evenness in urbanized areas with different intensity of nightlife activities from April 2008 to March 2009. An overall of 13,503 items were counted. Around 92% of the total litter was comprised by cigarette butts, papers and plastics. We found significant spatial differences in the abundance of litter between sampling sites, with the greatest amounts of litter at the Alem site followed by the Hipólito site (both with an intensive nightlife activity) compared with the Chauvin site (a quiet high-income neighborhood). The composition of litter of the Alem and the Hipólito sites was relatively similar and both sites differ with respect to the Chauvin site. Cigarette butts, papers, and plastics were the items that contributed most to the dissimilarity between sampling sites. The diversity of litter was the single community parameter that significantly differed from the other seasons. We discussed the potential effect of nightlife activities on the amounts and quality of urban litter in the city of Mar del Plata. © 2014 Elsevier Ltd.

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