Some 18 NGO representatives from 8 countries, namely Belarus, Estonia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russia and Sweden, were brought together in a two-day workshop on marine litter monitoring. The workshop was organized from 2-3 November 2016 in Gdansk (Poland) by the Coalition Clean Baltic in collaboration with the Polish Ecological Club and it was led by MIO-ECSDE.
The participants were introduced to the theme of marine litter, its sources and impacts, as well as the main legislative frameworks relevant to the countries sharing the Baltic Sea and the key actions undertaken at European and Regional Sea Conventions to combat marine litter. The participants had the opportunity to get acquainted step-by-step with the methodology for monitoring marine macro-litter on beaches and gained hands on experience on how to perform beach litter surveys.
The participants surveyed two transects at the coastline of Gdansk and processed the respective data in order to obtain a snapshot of the marine litter density in the area and the potential main sources.
The workshop was also a direct contribution to the first ever Marine Litter Watch Month, that is to took place in more than 75 of Europe’s most beautiful beaches from 17 September to 16 October 2016. The Marine Litter Watch Month is an initiative of the European Environment Agency jointly with over 20 NGOs – one of which CCB and MIO-ECSDE – and research institutes. The Marine Litter Watch aims to fill the ‘data gaps’ that are hampering an effective implementation of essential measures to address the growing threat of marine litter in European Regional Seas.