Researchers will seek to map the spatial distribution and movement of marine plastic; calculate the costs of reducing both the stock and flows of plastic in and into the marine environment; develop a framework to determine the economic benefits of different levels of international cooperation in reducing plastic waste; and identify incentives that might encourage a joined-up approach.
Prof De Vries added: “Despite increasing worldwide recognition of the problem of marine plastic, a lack of coordinated and effective control persists. Our research will contribute to discussions around the introduction of an international agreement on plastics in the marine environment, and we are hopeful our findings will inspire international efforts towards solving this massive environmental problem.”
Helen Rogers, Senior Portfolio Manager at ESRC said: “ESRC is delighted to be funding to this project, with contributions from NERC and as part of UK Research and Innovation, we are well placed to foster research that can help solve the pressing issue of the plastic waste problem.
“Humanity’s shared environment is at risk and Prof de Vries’ work will contribute to its preservation.”