Experts Lecture on Marine Plastic Pollution

As part of the Governing Human Activities that Affect the Ocean course, on 14 March World Maritime University (WMU) students in the Ocean Sustainability, Governance and Management (OSGM) specialization had the opportunity to interact with Ms Tamara Barabadze from the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Ms Amparo Perez Roda from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and Ms Paola Acuna Chacon of the Government of Costa Rica as guest lecturers. 

The guests delivered an online lecture about the GloLitter Partnerships project and its implementation in Costa Rica. The GloLitter Partnership project is a collaborative initiative involving the Government of Norway, IMO and FAO and aims to reduce marine litter. The global project supports developing countries, including Small Islands Developing States (SIDS) and Least Developed Countries (LDCs) in identifying opportunities for the prevention and reduction of marine litter. The GloLitter Partnerships project serves as an outstanding example of how integrated approaches towards marine plastic pollution may be developed and implemented between different sectors and actors. The importance of the engagement with the industry and NGOs was emphasized. Further, Ms Acuna highlighted the systematic approach undertaken by Costa Rica to address the root causes of marine litter in its environment. She also informed WMU students of the regulatory measures taken by Costa Rica, such as the ban on certain forms of plastics, including styrofoam. 

About the Guest Lecturers

As the Project Manager at the IMO Department of Partnerships and Projects, Ms Barabadze oversees the implementation of the GloLitter Partnerships Project that is implemented by IMO in partnership with FAO to support the reduction and elimination of marine plastic litter originating from shipping and fisheries industries. She has over 20 years of experience in development assistance with international donors including UN/IMO, USAID, World Bank, and EU, leading the programs in environment, energy, and climate change.

Ms Amparo Perez Roda is the GloLitter Partnerships project coordinator at FAO and works in the Sustainable Fisheries Technology and Operations Team, Fisheries and Aquaculture Division. She has extensive work experience on food loss reduction in marine capture fisheries, fishing gear management and plastic marine litter prevention and reduction from fishing operations, in particular abandoned, lost or otherwise discarded fishing gear.

Ms Acuna is currently the Legal Advisor to the Navigation and Security Department of the Port Maritime Division, Ministry of Public Works and Transport of the Government of Costa Rica. She became a Member of the National Commission for Port Women from September 2019 and in 2020 she was appointed Coordinator to the National Task Force and main Contact Point with IMO-FAO to the GloLitter Project. She is an Alumna of IMLI.

About the Malmö MSc in Maritime Affairs

The Malmö MSc in Maritime Affairs is a 14-month programme with seven specializations: Maritime Education & Training; Maritime Energy Management; Maritime Law & Policy; Maritime Safety & Environmental Administration; Ocean Sustainability, Governance and Management; Port Management, and Shipping Management & Logistics. Foundation studies are taught in the first term and cover the introductory knowledge that is fundamental to all activities in the maritime field. Three successive terms focus on specialization studies and a dissertation. WMU has more than 150 Visiting Lecturers from around the world who contribute their expertise to enrich the education of WMU students.

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