ISSN 1063-0740, Russian Journal of Marine Biology, 2009, Vol. 35, No. 7, pp. 521–534. © Pleiades Publishing, Ltd., 2009.
Original Russian Text © Yu.A. Galysheva, 2009, published in Izvestiya TINRO.
At the current level of the development of civiliza-
tion, the World Ocean, and especially its coastal part, is
being increasingly involved in the spheres of human
activities. The steadily increasing anthropogenic pres-
sure on shelf ecosystems causes considerable and
sometimes catastrophic changes. The scale of the dis-
turbance of the ecological balance under the inﬂuence
of anthropogenic factors is so great that it can be com-
parable with natural processes.
Anthropogenic impacts are known to harm the phys-
ical and chemical characteristics of the marine environ-
ment, introduce compounds that are alien for natural
systems and create atypically high concentrations of
many substances in local parts of coastal waters. As a
result of anthropogenic pollution, toxic substances,
such as chlorinated carbohydrates, as well as heavy-
metal compounds, phenols, detergents, and radionu-
clides, among other substances, reach marine waters.
However, at present, the introduction and accumulation
of household organic substances carried with municipal
sewage waters and oil organics of large port cities in
nearshore marine ecosystems reach their greatest
extents in areas with developed infrastructures.
It should be noted that organic matter (OM) is
always present in the marine environment, and, conse-
quently, its balance, including its dynamics of inﬂow,
oxidation during decomposition, and consumption for
primary production, is more important for ecosystems
than just its presence. Waters ﬂowing from areas with
developed infrastructures, i.e., river runoffs from indus-
trial and urban territories, drainage of land, discharges
of sewage and bilge waters, intensive recreational loads
on the coast, contribute to the enrichment of the marine
environment with OM most heavily. In addition to sew-
age waters, civil and naval ﬂeets, transportation, and (to
a lesser degree) extraction of oil carbohydrates are also
inﬂuential sources of anthropogenic OM.
For the past decade, signs of the overburdening of
the biosphere with industrial and other wastes, includ-
ing various organic substances, have become especially
apparent in the ocean. The settling of populations in
maritime areas causes an increase in the concentrations
of organic compounds in water. Thus, the contents of
phosphorus and nitrogen compounds have been regu-
larly shown to grow in Russian waters of the Baltic and
Black seas [29, 30], as well as in the Peter the Great
Bay of the Sea of Japan, since the 1980s.
The goal of this work is to analyze the factors inﬂu-
encing the inﬂow of anthropogenic organic pollutants
in various areas of the Russian sector of the Sea of
Japan and evaluate the biological consequences of their
impact on marine biocenoses.
Accumulation of Organic Matter in the Russian Waters
of the Sea of Japan and Changes in Biocenoses
Most urban maritime territories and zones with a
developed infrastructure exert a complex inﬂuence on
the marine environment and cause mixed organic pollu-
tion in coastal waters. Different areas of the Russian
coast of the Sea of Japan undergo unequal levels and
types of anthropogenic impacts, which results in vari-
Biological Consequences of Organic Pollution of Nearshore
Marine Ecosystems in the Russian Waters of the Sea of Japan
Yu. A. Galysheva
Far Eastern National University, Vladivostok, 690600 Russia
Received April 1, 2009
—The process of the inﬂow and accumulation of organic matter in the bays and bights of the Russian
coast of the Sea of Japan was evaluated. Changes in the composition and structure of marine communities that
take place in certain water bodies of Primorsky Krai were shown using the author’s own material and literature
data. The rating of water bodies by the degree of the anthropogenic transformation of biocenoses as a result of
the accumulation of organic matter was performed.
organic matter, nearshore ecosystems, Sea of Japan, biocenoses, bioindication.