National Geographic to launch international ‘Sea to Source’ expeditions for inclusive solutions to the plastic waste crisis

National Geographic to launch international ‘Sea to Source’ expeditions for inclusive solutions to the plastic waste crisis

May 13, 2019
Press Release: National Geographic

Part of ‘Planet or Plastic?’ Initiative, initial study of Ganges River by all-female expedition team

An international, all-female expedition team will study plastic pollution in one of the world’s most iconic waterways — the Ganges River (known locally as Ganga and Padma). The ‘Sea to Source: Ganges’ river expedition, in partnership with the Wildlife Institute of India (WII), the University of Dhaka and WildTeam, is part of National Geographic’s journey to better understand and document how plastic waste travels from source to sea and to fill critical knowledge gaps around plastic flow, load and composition. The expedition will offer an unprecedented opportunity to scientifically document plastic waste in a watershed and develop holistic and inclusive solutions.

The Sea to Source: Ganges expedition is the first of several international river expeditions planned as part of National Geographic’s Planet or Plastic? initiative, which aims to significantly reduce the amount of single-use plastic that reaches the ocean. After an initial expedition to the Ganges this spring, the team plans to replicate the expedition after the monsoon season to capture seasonal variations.

The expedition will focus on plastic pollution in three key areas: land, water and people. The team working on the land portion will collect data on the input and use of plastic in communities, and how waste is collected and managed, and will quantify the movement and type of plastic in the environment. The water team will study plastic pollution in the air, water, sediment and species in and around the river. The socioeconomic team will survey local communities along the expedition route to better understand awareness and perceptions of plastic pollution, household plastic waste management and local solutions for addressing this issue. During the expeditions, the team will work with local stakeholders to translate its scientific findings using storytelling to raise awareness about plastic pollution and drive behavior change.

Plastic Free World Conference & Expo 2019 will take place from Thursday 27 June to Friday 28 June, at the Kap Europa, Frankfurt Messe, Frankfurt, Germany. To register for this highly focused and solutions-driven event, please click here. For sponsorship and exhibition opportunities, please email peter@trans-globalevents.com

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