“Marine litter in our oceans is a major threat to a sustainable planet.”

Between 1990 and 2015 alone, an estimated 100 million metric tons of mostly plastic waste entered the oceans.


This is a global marine disaster which we have highlighted in many published articles over the years in The Orkney News.

Most recently we publicised the innovative solution to the plastic pollution problem washing onto the shores of the island of North Ronaldsay. Innovative Project to Solve Plastic Pollution In North Ronaldsay

A new study from marine scientists at Hereon’s Institute of Coastal System – Analysis and Modeling, has looked at the existing solutions worldwide which have been proposed. Some have fallen by the wayside and only a few have kept going.

In its opening remarks it states:

Marine litter in our oceans is a major threat to a sustainable planet.

Global assessment of innovative solutions to tackle marine litter

The team looked at all categories and examined everything from crowdfunding projects to research databases. The scientists studied close to 200 solutions that plan to utilize drones, robots, conveyor belts, nets, pumps, or filters, depending on whether they will clean in coastal areas, at sea, or on the ocean floor.

To date, many developers have been using similar technological approaches, but there are indications that the next generation will increasingly rely on a wide variety of solutions. More and more, they will integrate machine learning, robotics, automation, big data analyses, and modeling.

While the scientific community seems to focus mainly on monitoring and NGOs mostly emphasize prevention, most cleanup solutions result from the cooperation of different players, the study claims.

Unfortunately very few solutions have become a technological reality or have been launched commercially.

The research recommends that political action is needed including  international cooperation between researchers and national environmental departments and agencies.

To read more about this click on the link: Global assessment of innovative solutions to tackle marine litter

Claire and Libby Walker found a broken box on Skaill beach and filled it with plastic within 20 minutes. It was mostly nylon rope and netting, a few shotgun cartridges and plastic bottles.

Categories: Science

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