Reporting year: 2016
Achievement at a glance
• The GPML is acknowledged as a key partnership mechanism for marine litter stakeholders (UNEA, GA and other resolutions reference it); • Members webinars were initiated in 2015 to facilitate collaboration and information sharing within the GPML. The Secretariat provides updates and partners are invited to make short presentations on their work. The webinars are recorded and made available online to allow partners in different timezones to view the presentations; • Knowledge generation involving partners: partners were invited to contribute case studies and expertise for e.g. the first Massive Open Online Course on Marine Litter (6,500 registered participants), many also contributed expertise to the development of the study “Marine plastic debris and microplastics – Global lessons and research to inspire action and guide policy change” launched in May 2016 ( ); • Regional nodes of the partnership have so far been established in the Wider Caribbean Region and the Northwest Pacific. This is an opportunity to better meet regional and national needs and identify priority areas for intervention – new nodes will be in Pacific and in Mediterranean; • Upscaling of member initiatives – by showcasing national or regional initiatives at a global level we have promoted strengthening of initiatives as well as replication; • A waste minimization demonstration project was supported in Samoa to demonstrate best practice measures for effective waste management and minimisation of marine debris. A brief overview of the work carried out under the project can be found here (including a short documentary); • The project was implemented in partnership with the Government of Samoa, SPREP and the GPML in collaboration with e.g. private sector. A spin off project was since established in the Solomon Islands utilizing litter booms to monitor riverine input;
Challenges faced in implementation
No major challenges were faced in the implementation. It was very useful to develop a draft framework document for the partnership with clear indicators linked to processes such as the SDG implementation to show relevance of the GPML and make it easier for partners to see where they fit in and what the roles of Secretariat, Steering Committee , etc. are. This can be used for consultation purposes and discussions; By involving the Steering Committee and partners in the promotion of the GPML the outreach would be strengthened. In this regard an outreach package is being developed;
Next steps
The GPML will support the development of a Plastics Management Strategy for SIDS and Islands. It will be developed as a global framework and pilot projects will be supported in the SIDS regions to demonstrate how it could be adapted to a national context. In addition, a GPML regional node will be established in the Pacific in collaboration with SPREP, and another one in the Mediterranean in collaboration with the Mediterranean Action Plan. The Massive Open Online Course on Marine Litter will be revised to include hotspot analysis, risk-based assessment etc. with SIDS specific components. This will be available in 2017.A Global Campaign on Marine Litter is under development and a database on BATs/BEPs for ML management will be added to the online Marine Litter Network in collaboration with the University of Georgia. The database is expected to outline various Best Available Technologies (BATs) / Best Environmental Practices (BEPs) in relation to marine litter reduction (upstream to downstream). Several publications and short papers will be launched in 2016 including the socioeconomics of marine litter; a legislative overview of marine litter; gender, plastics and chemicals, etc.
Measurable outcomes
Partners in Samoa
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Ministry of Health and the Samoa Tourism Authority, in partnership with the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the UNEP through the GPML, launched a campaign to help address the forecast increase in waste generated during the SIDS Conference, with an eye to improve waste management practices beyond the conference. A waste management programme was established at the Samoa Ports Authority and Authority officials were trained on how to best deal with the extra waste generated by the conference.\r\nSPREP ran community-led activities, which included a clean-up of the Mulivai and Vaisigano rivers, community beach clean-ups, provision of trash stands and a waste craft training for women\'s groups.\r\n\r\nMembers of the Fugalei SISDAC Women\'s committee, the Tuaefu women\'s committee, the Pan-Pacific South East Asia Women\'s Association (PPSEAWA), and Women in Business Development Incorporated (WIBDI) had the opportunity to attend workshops on waste-craft - refashioning rubbish into beautiful and sought-after consumer items. In other Pacific island countries such as Fiji, the practice has proven to be a huge success - not just in terms of raising awareness of sound waste management practices but also in providing income to many communities from the sale of items created from the waste materials.\r\n\r\nA temporary boom has been placed across the mouth of Apia\'s Vaisigano River. This boom, together three others installed at Apia\'s major rivers, will help prevent litter and debris from entering Apia harbour and the marina. The boom is 120m long and has a buoyant top with a net suspended below into the water capturing the rubbish. MNRE, with the support of the local community, will look after the booms to ensure they are effectively used. As a result, communities are taking charge of dealing with the waste problem.\r\n
UNEA resolution 2/11 Marine plastic litter and microplastics
Status of initiative
On track
Supporting Documents
Copyright 2016 United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs