Disposal and abandonment of waste at sea and marine litter

Why is this an issue for ACOPS?

The capacity of the ocean to absorb waste is finite.

Reports on the State of the Environment continue to highlight problems and challenges.  The first United Nations World Ocean Assessment sets a baseline against which to take action.

Marine litter and microplastics represent a specific problem that can only be solved by political will, societal choices and education.

ACOPS activity

ACOPS is an Observer to the London Convention/London Protocol and contributed to discussions on ocean fertilisation.

Professor David Johnson has taken up the issue of deep-sea tailings placement at workshop in Peru in 2015 and within OSPAR.

ACOPS convened a House of Lords dialogue on marine litter in 2016 and Professor David Johnson wrote a letter to the UNGA Secretary-General concerning single-use marine plastics on World Ocean Day 2017 during the UN Oceans Conference.

Future intentions

ACOPS will continue to follow the work of the London Convention/London Protocol and interact with GESAMP.

ACOPS will follow development linked to deep sea tailings placement including within OSPAR and its Committee on Environmental Impacts of Human Activities (see Report ) and at the International Seabed Authority (ISA).

ACOPS will work to raise awareness of the impacts of marine litter especially plastics.