Plastic bottles and rubbish pollution in ocean

Marine debris including plastic and microplastic litter has been emerging as a global threat to marine organisms, ecosystems, human health and socio-economic development. According to a recent study, several countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) were ranked among the world’s largest contributors to marine plastic pollution. To address this issue, ASEAN will bring together relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies and multi sectoral stakeholders to discuss the ways forward for ASEAN at the “ASEAN Conference on Reducing Marine Debris in ASEAN Region”, Phuket, Thailand, 22-23 November 2017.

The Conference is organized by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MNRE), Government of Thailand. The IOC Sub-Commission for the Western Pacific (WESTPAC) was invited to co-organize the Conference, together with ASEAN Secretariat, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and Kasetsart University (KU).

Side event on research on marine debris, including plastics and microplastics

Considering our limited scientific knowledge on marine debris and its impacts, it is critical to synergize our efforts in scientific development which will enable us to improve our understanding and inform policies and decisions to address marine debris.

Thus WESTPAC, together with the Department of Marine and Coastal Resources of Thailand, will conduct a side event on “Research on Marine Debris and Microplastics”, 23 November 2017. This side event aims to provide an interactive platform for experts, particularly from ASEAN countries, to exchange their knowledge on marine debris and microplastic research, and discuss on how scientific knowledge can help address marine litter issues in ASEAN countries.

The side event aims to:

  1. exchange information on current scientific knowledge and research on marine debris, particularly on plastics and microplastics;
  2. identify key research related challenges and gaps in addressing marine plastic and microplastic debris issues in ASEAN countries;
  3. discuss on how science and research can help address marine plastic and microplastic debris issues in ASEAN countries.

Invited Speakers

Speaker: Jenna Jembeck, University of Georgia, USA
Presentation Title: Plastic Waste Inputs from Land into the Ocean (TBC)

Speaker: Daoji Li, East China Normal University, China
Presentation Title: Regional Efforts on Microplastic Research in Asia and the Pacific

Speaker: Somkiat Khokiattiwong, Department of Marine and Coastal Resources, Thailand
Presentation Title: National Efforts on Plastic and Microplastic Research in Thailand

Time: 09:00 – 13:00

Venue: JW Marriott Hotel, Phuket, Thailand