A panel of advocates concerned about plastic pollution at sea met together in Monaco on March 10 -11, 2015. After confirming an inventory of plastic pollution in the Mediterranean Sea, concrete actions to fight against this problem emerged. These constructive and dynamic discussions helped formulate the “Monaco Declaration, to act against plastic pollution in the Mediterranean” and announced the creation of the Task Force “Beyond Plastic Med” supported by HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco.
More than 200 participants from 10 countries on the Mediterranean discussed the problem of plastic pollution for two days at the Monaco Yacht Club. The many participants concerned by this pollution and the life cycle of plastic waste presented the results of their work, identified problematic areas, and exchanged views on possible solutions. In the next days, all the videos of the conference will be published on bemed.org and a sum up is already available on Storify.
Xavier Sticker, French Ambassador for the Environment, highlighted in the concluding session the necessity for joint work between participants, and stressed one of the major objectives of the Task Force: “The number one priority for the protection of the marine environment is to reduce plastic emissions. The subject of plastic at sea can not be dealt with alone: we need a partnership approach and proprietary rights for all partners on the northern and southern shores of the Mediterranean. (…) This conference is an important additional step for the protection of the marine environment: a very useful event because we have to establish an awareness, with policy makers but also with industrialists”.
His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco said in his closing remarks: “Tackling plastic pollution in the Mediterranean is not only to fight against a specific problem, localized and detailed: it is primarily recognizing a collective responsibility that is embodied in the many issues your discussions brought up. […] That is why we in Monaco are taking important steps in this direction. Starting next year, the distribution of single-use plastic bags will be banned. […] One of the results of today’s conference is to continue work within a Task Force to investigate and promote practical solutions. My Foundation will contribute with its partners in this process.»
The next step is to develop a plan of action for the Task Force “Beyond Plastic Med.”
Consult the “Monaco Declaration, to act against plastic pollution in the Mediterranean”
CONFERENCE STATISTICS :
– 10 Mediterranean countries represented by 200 participants
– 150 Monegasque schoolchildren learned about the issue of plastic waste
– 15 000 conference connections streamed
– 11 hours of discussion between participants and the public
– 1 000 tweets
IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CONFERENCE :
– Until 10 May, an exhibit at the Galerie des Pêcheurs in Monaco:
Gregg Segal, Tess Felix and Alain Delorme each offer their own take on the problem of plastic waste. Whether they’re offering a direct critique of our consumption habits, or making poetry out of the potentially aesthetic aspect of waste, these three artists all share the desire to make the visitor think about this problem, with its worrying but sadly underestimated consequences.
The Mediterranean area is a high-priority geographical area for the Prince Albert II of Monaco Foundation, an area of influence for Surfrider Foundation Europe through its involvement in Initiatives Océanes activities, an exploration and research area for Tara in 2014, and a work area for the MAVA Foundation.