As recently evidenced by scientific research investigations, there is an urgent need to increase public awareness about the adverse effects of plastic pollution on marine organisms, to foster a sense of individual responsibility and to encourage government action and public initiatives for a reduction of the most severe impacts. The implementation of action plans to reduce the input of marine plastic around the world needs to involve different stakeholders from the plastic, tourism and fishing industries, the research community, NGOs, local authorities and national governments. Only this way can socio-economic and environmental issues resulting from plastic pollution be effectively and globally addressed.
The awareness of this growing threat to individual marine organisms, species and ecosystems is now recognized by the international community as one of the main priority issues for the protection of the marine environment in the forthcoming years. With the present report, the IUCN Global Marine and Polar Programme aims to address its partner and member organizations’ need to have up-to-date and reliable information this issue, and to build a coalition to raise awareness and identify policy options.
By Carl Gustaf Lundin
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