TRACK 10: Innovative Solutions Case Studies from Around the World

Note: The 6IMDC Team is looking for case studies from all geographical locations that include, but are not limited to the following technical sessions. Please submit an abstract/poster idea even if your country is not represented in the list of sessions below.

Land-Based Strategies to Address Marine Debris: Vietnam Case Study

Session Chair: Eric DesRoberts, Ocean Conservancy

This session will take a deep dive into a case study of waste management opportunities in rural Vietnam and will share insights from NGO, industry, and local government representatives.

 Close to 75% of trash in the ocean is dumped directly into the natural environment by households, generally due to inadequate or nonexistent local waste services. While the total volume of marine leakage is highest from urban areas, the proportion of households who dump waste is highest in rural areas, where few, if any, waste services exist.  In Vietnam, over 60% of its population lives in close proximity to waterways and nearly 70% of the population lives in rural areas. Starting in early 2017, Ocean Conservancy worked with The Dow Chemical Company and many organizations in Vietnam to better understand the waste management challenges in rural areas and start to develop potential solutions to address this issue. This session will discuss the key findings of this project, highlight the need for locally appropriate solutions to addressing the entire waste stream, emphasize the benefits of a collaborative approach, and outline the potential to implement and scale solutions specific to rural areas.

Marine Debris Networks: Reasons, Impacts and Challenges

Session Chairs: Nina van Toulon, Indonesian Waste Platform; Jella Kandziora, Freelancer

The creation of marine networks is of utmost importance as they offer a framework to evaluate strategies, share information and join efforts to tackle marine debris and reach Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14.

Marine debris is one of the most challenging problems of the 21st century. Due to its complexity multiple measures are needed at various scales and targeting different audiences worldwide. Stakeholders from all sectors need to collaborate. In order to tackle marine debris national and international networks based on a collective impact approach (CIA) are required. Through this framework it is possible to coordinate work, evaluate strategies, share information, build collaborations between all relevant stakeholders and above all focus their efforts towards the prevention and reduction of marine debris.

The Indonesian Waste Platform, founded in October 2015, is a hub connecting stakeholders from government, industry, academia and grass roots/community initiatives IWP hub shows exemplary how collective impact not only works in practice on national level but could also serve as a global model.

The aim of the session is to present existing marine debris networks (i.e. Indonesian Waste Platform, African Marine Waste Network etc.) and their bottom-up approaches to connect stakeholders from all sectors as well as to promote the forming of a common shared vision, strategy and action plans. At the end of the session the awareness regarding the important role of a marine debris network in the context of reaching SDG 14 shall be increased. Furthermore, possible solutions to challenges like the lack of funding shall be discussed.

Cross-sectoral Collaboration for Rapid Solutions: Providing Sustainable Waste Management in Developing-economy Cities

Session Chair: Heather Troutman, EAP Consult Ltd

Policy makers, urban planners, civil society, the private and informal sectors must come together to devise innovative solutions to stop marine debris inputs at source by facilitating comprehensive waste management services to all citizens, especially the urban poor.

 The majority of land-based marine debris inputs globally come from developing-economy cities lacking comprehensive waste management services fueled by high rates of informality, lagging infrastructure, insufficient tax-base for municipal services, rapid population growth and projections for sharp economic development. Without access to municipal services, rivers are commonly used to take the waste “away” into our global oceans.  The public, private, civil and informal sectors and the international development community must collaborate to find rapid solutions to extend waste management services in areas that are currently neglected and to those citizens unable to afford the services.  One approach is the establishment of resource recovery and reprocessing enterprises that use waste materials to produce valuable products, therefore creating an economic demand for waste materials.  In the short-term, informal communities can be empowered to collect and sort their own wastes and then sell the materials to manufacturers, creating needed jobs, saving virgin resources and preventing movement of wastes into marine environments. This strategy has also been used to engage struggling fisher-folk to help remove debris from the marine environment, augmenting their difficult incomes. Cities and companies around the world have been demonstrating best practices in cross-sectoral partnerships to mobilize the unique resources of different stakeholder groups to rapidly reach a collective aim: a clean urban environment and healthy water bodies.  This technical session will bring together change makers from different sectors and different regions to discuss how the common characteristics shared by developing-economy cities can be used as strategies for socioeconomic development and the provision of sustainable waste management services to all citizens.  Participants will learn about the different perspectives, constraints and resources available to generalized stakeholder groups, and learn strategies to initiate and sustain necessary support.  Panelist will describe the technologies, strategies and financial products and the adaptation process to make them appropriate in their context, and share key insights into their successes and failures in communities around the world.  Waste generation and management is a fundamentally human activity.  Behavioral Insight and Human Centered Design help us understand the human elements of waste management in any specific place, and help us identify strategies that will work specifically in that place at a pace as rapid as the global crises of marine debris demands.  This technical session will create a space for the sharing of best practices and the establishment of partnerships to work with our global citizens to design and implement solutions together for the elimination of land-based marine debris inputs.


A Tale of Two Cities' Marine Trash Removal Efforts: Baltimore, MD USA and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Session Chairs: Robert M Summers, KCI Technologies; Thomas Sprehe, KCI Technologies

 Action-oriented people of all disciplines seeking methods to stop the flow of trash from cities to the marine environment now, the scale of the problem, and solutions being applied and planned in two very different parts of the world.

The world's oceans are being buried in debris now. We have to stop the bleeding and remove the big pieces of debris before they break down and disperse in our waters as we seek more aggressive preventative measures, or it may be too late. The further marine debris travels into the world's coastal waters and the sea, it becomes more a more difficult and expensive to remove and has more time and opportunity to wreak havoc on the ecosystem and human health. Baltimore,

Maryland and Rio de Janeiro are two very different cities that are taking aggressive action to control marine debris with mixed success. This session will explore the scope of the problem and the solutions that have been and are being tried now to reduce debris entering Chesapeake Bay and Gianabara Bay and ultimately the sea. Efforts in Baltimore are being driven by a unique private sector and public sector partnership. Rio de Janeiro is taking a government focused approach but action is also being driven by a non-profit sector effort that uses the marine environment as a teaching tool to educate and engage students from poor families living in the watershed.


From Your Block to the Bay: Innovative Solutions to Trash Pollution in Baltimore

Session Chairs: Julie Lawson, Trash Free Maryland; Thomas Sprehe, KCI Technologies

 The panel will examine a coordinated system of innovative approaches to behavior change, community engagement, and trash removal that can be applied in cities around the world.

 As a post-industrial city with a declining population, Baltimore, Maryland, faces numerous challenges. Development of trash removal regulations (TMDL) for the Inner Harbor in 2014 spurred additional investment in preventing and cleaning up trash pollution in the water, but the blight of litter is also a major community concern, diminishing quality of life and contributing to infrastructure issues.

Through extensive partnership and innovation, the city now has a nearly complete system of interventions to address litter and marine debris through behavior change, community engagement, and technology. The approaches the speakers will present can bring new ideas to cities around the world, incorporating themes of environmental justice, public-private-NGO partnership, and regulation/policy.

Julie Lawson of Trash Free Maryland will examine aspects of the Trash Free Baltimore coordinated campaign to change littering behavior. Through formative research, the project team identified recovery as a key motif to any public-facing campaign, and began a partnership with substance abuse treatment centers and health clinics around the city to develop a clinical protocol connecting litter pickup with rehabilitation from heroin/opioid addiction.

Leanna Wetmore of the Waterfront Partnership’s Healthy Harbor Initiative will share insights about working with residents in highly distressed neighborhoods to rehabilitate alleys and reconnect neighbors to each other through trash cleanup and public art.

Baltimore’s famed Mr. Trash Wheel, and newly installed Professor Trash Wheel, have made a splash on social media and generated significant attention both locally and globally, educating people about trash pollution while removing more than a million pounds of debris from Baltimore’s rivers. Tom Sprehe of KCI, John Kellett of Clearwater Mills, or Adam Lindquist of the Waterfront Partnership will outline how the water wheels came about, their effectiveness in educating the public, and the potential they have in waterways around the world.

The session will conclude with a panel discussion about how the approaches support each other, the public-private-NGO partnerships that made them successful, and what lies ahead.

See Other Tracks: Monitoring and Citizen Science · Research and Microplastic/Microfibers · Prevention · Private Sector Collaboration, Technology, and Innovation · Education and Communication · Implementing Effective Law Regulations, and Policy · Removal · Single-Use Product Policies, Regulations and Laws · Derelict Fishing Gear

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