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Ecomondo to spotlight plastics challenges

Major environmental issues, including plastics pollution and recycling, will take center stage at this year’s technology trade show Ecomondo.

Scheduled for 3-6 November in Rimini, Italy, the event will be hosting the international launch of the Bluemed Pilot Initiative for a healthy and plastic-free Mediterranean sea and coastline. The project has been initiated by PlasticsEurope and a handfull of Mediterranean associations involved in plastics recycling: BAP Bulgaria, HGK Croatia, APKA Albania, KFBIH Bosnia Herzegovina, AHPI Greece, ASPAPLAST Romania, PAGEV Turkey, COREPLA Italy, PlasticsEurope France, PlasticsEurope Iberica Spain). The initiative is supported by the European Commission.

Coastlines covered with plastics

Plastics pollution in the Mediterranean is a major and evergrowing problem, with Turkey and Egypt being the biggest source of plastic waste. According to the World Wildlife Foundation WWF), the coastline of Cilicia in south-east Turkey has the highest plastic pollution in the Mediterranean with 31.3 kg of debris per kilometre. Other hotspots include: Barcelona (26.1 kg), Tel Aviv (21 kg), The Po Delta (18.2 kg), Algiers (12.2 kg), and the Bay of Marseille (9.4 kg).

The WWF says marine pollution costs tourism, fisheries and maritime sectors around EUR 641 million each year. Without action, plastics pollution in the region is expected to quadruple by 2050.

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