New initiative to tackle marine plastic litter along the Ganges

Japan and UN Environment have launched a new cooperation to improve knowledge on marine plastic litter in Southeast Asia and India. Their goal is to help develop countermeasures against this global threat.

The new initiative will develop a simulation model for plastic leakage and monitor leakage hotspots along the Ganges and Mekong rivers. Selected cities along the Ganges, as well as Mumbai and Agra, will also receive support to stop plastic pollution.

Japan has earmarked over $1.1 million to support the initiative, which will be implemented starting this month by the Asia and Pacific office of UN Environment, which is based in Bangkok.

“The scale of plastic pollution is a major problem affecting our oceans and our planet,” said Dechen Tsering, regional director for UN Environment in Asia and the Pacific. “With this initiative, we’re taking important steps to tackle the problem at its source rather than downstream.”

While global awareness of marine litter and plastic pollution has surged in recent years, scientific knowledge on marine plastic litter and effective countermeasures are still lacking.

Tsering praised the new initiative as an “important opportunity” to improve knowledge on marine plastic litter and “make great strides towards a planet free of plastic pollution”.

Image credit: Ajay Goel via Flickr

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