Characterization of microplastics in the water and sediment of Baram River estuary, Borneo Island

Wei Sheng Choong, Tony Hadibarata*, Adhi Yuniarto, Kuok Ho Daniel Tang, Faizuan Abdullah, Muhammad Syafrudin, Dunia A. Al Farraj, Amal M. Al-Mohaimeed

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


The Baram River is one of the largest rivers in Sarawak, where many large industries, such as plywood, sawmills, shipyards, interisland ports, and other wood-based industries are located along the river. Microplastic contamination has become a widespread and growing concern worldwide because of the small sizes of microplastics and their presence in seafood such as fish, squid, scallop, crabs, shrimp, and mussels. In this study, microplastics were found in all sampling stations. Out of the 4017 microplastics found in the water and sediment, microplastics fragment accounted for 67.8% of total microplastics, followed by fiber, film, pellet, and foam. Five microplastic polymer types were detected by ATR-FTIR, including polyethylene (PE), polyester (PET) fibers, silicon polymer, nitrile, and polystyrene (PS). The most common microplastics size range in Baram River was 0.3–1 mm, with blue as the highly abundant color.

Original languageEnglish
Article number112880
JournalMarine Pollution Bulletin
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021


  • Baram River estuary
  • Microplastic
  • River water
  • Sediment


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