The EGU General Assembly 2021 will be held on the
19-23 April 2021 in the on-line format vEGU21 Gather Online (#vEGU21
We cordially invite you to join the session ITS2.5:
Global plastic contamination: a journey towards scientifically informed policies and solutions
The session has an interdisciplinary focus, aiming to bring together academics from a variety of research fields and citizen science initiatives along with stakeholders
from civil society and industry, as well as regulators and policymakers. Studies on biota-plastic interactions, plastic fluxes linked to human activities and environmental changes (from synoptic events to climate change) and studies linking plastic characteristics
to toxicological impacts (chemistry, materials science and ecotoxicology) are especially welcomed. The session is linked to the one at SETAC Europe 2021 (Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry), to connect geoscientists with ecotoxicologists.
The session will run in the virtual PICO format, which features 2 min. introductions of each presentation followed by individual break-out webinars with time for discussion.
Online presentation materials will be available for registered participants for 2 months around the meeting, with an option for authors to allow comments for online discussion. Further information is at
Plastic contamination is a global concern. With increasing usage and disposal of plastics, waste management is often inefficient in processing the volumes of plastic discarded. A large proportion
of plastic waste accumulates in the natural environment where clean-up is difficult, if not impossible. This results in the plastic contamination persisting in the environment for many years, having the potential to cause long-term ecological harm, ultimately
To mitigate plastic pollution and find solutions to reduce harmful effects, a better understanding of the sources and pathways of plastics in the environment is needed. This should inform social and industrial practices, as well as advise on regulatory changes
to address plastic management. This will also promote developing a roadmap towards the development and safe usage of alternative materials, to reduce environmental and health implications. The approach aims at bringing together academics from a variety of
research fields and citizen science initiatives along with stakeholders from civil society and industry, as well as regulators and policymakers. The task requires collaboration across disciplines, from environmental sciences, including biology and chemistry,
geosciences, atmospheric sciences and oceanography, to materials science, social sciences and economics.
This session will address the linkages and cross-disciplinary collaborations required for effective progress in this field. We specifically invite presentations featuring successes and challenges in collaboration between academia, industry and regulators. Presentations
on tracking plastics and on elucidating connecting mechanisms from human activities through to environmental abundance and impact are encouraged. Studies on biota-plastic interactions, plastic fluxes linked to human activities and environmental changes (from
synoptic events to climate change) and studies linking plastic characteristics to toxicological impacts (chemistry, materials science and ecotoxicology) are welcomed.
This is a linked session co-organised and co-designed with a session at the annual meeting of SETAC Europe (Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry), by connected convenor teams, to ensure full integration and input across disciplines. Outputs from
the linked sessions will be disseminated widely across SETAC and EGU members through online resources, with a view to effective knowledge sharing and building collaborations.
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