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Science Topic

Light and sound pollution

Our research aims to understand  the widespread and pervasive effects of artificial light at night, and sound pollution, on coastal and marine wildlife.

PML provided the first evidence that light pollution affects trophic interactions within coastal comunities. We work with practitioners in various industries in the coastal and maritime industries and policy, to co-develop solutions that limit sound and light pollution.

Through the GLOW network, PML is part of a global, collaborative initiative, studying the impacts of light pollution on coastal assemblages.

Resources and Links

ALAN research brief

Plymouth Marine Laboratory. 2023. Artificial Light at Night - impact on the marine environment. Research Brief: November 2023. Plymouth, UK. 4pp.


  • World leading tidal lightscape simulator aquarium facility
  • Behaviour, Sound and Imaging Laboratory (BSIL)

Selected publications

Underwood, CN; Davies, TW; Queirós, AM; 2017. Artificial light at night alters trophic interactions of intertidal invertebrates. Journal of Animal Ecology.

Tidau, S; Smyth, T; McKee, D; Wiedenmann, J; D'Angelo, C; Wilcockson, D; Ellison, A; Grimmer, AJ; Jenkins, SR; Widdicombe, S; Queirós, AM; Talbot, E; Wright, A; Davies, TW. 2021. Marine artificial light at night: An empirical and technical guide. Methods in Ecology and Evolution.

People who work in this area of research

Thomas Mesher

Macrofaunal Ecologist
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Joana Nunes

Benthic Ecologist
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Christine Pascoe

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Professor Ana M Queirós

Marine and climate change ecologist
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Dr Sevrine Sailley

Ecosystem modeller
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Professor Tim Smyth

Head of Science - Marine Biogeochemistry and Observations
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Dr Liz Talbot

Marine Ecologist
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Professor Steve Widdicombe

Director of Science and Deputy Chief Executive