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UNEP and the Government of Japan announced an initiative to develop a model for plastic leakage and monitor leakage hotspots along the Ganges and Mekong rivers.

The initiative will also enhance information and knowledge on how to develop and implement countermeasures against marine plastic litter.

4 March 2019: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Government of Japan have announced an initiative on tackling marine plastic litter in Southeast Asia and India. The initiative focuses on tackling plastic pollution at its source.

The initiative titled, ‘Promotion of Countermeasures Against Marine Plastic Litter in Southeast Asia and India,’ will develop a model for plastic leakage and monitor leakage hotspots along the Ganges and Mekong rivers. The initiative will also enhance information and knowledge on how to develop and implement countermeasures against marine plastic litter. Selected cities and local and provincial governments in India will also receive support to stop plastic pollution.

A spokesperson for the Government of Japan said that the initiative will work to solve the issue of marine plastic litter in Southeast Asia and India and to promote “measures by the international community as a whole, including supporting emerging countries in combating marine plastic litter, to realize a world without pollution.” UNEP’s Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific, Dechen Tsering, said the initiative offers an opportunity for Asian countries “to improve knowledge on marine plastic litter” and address plastic pollution “at its source rather than downstream.”

The Government of Japan has provided JPY 123 million, an amount equivalent to over USD 1,100,000 to support the initiative. UNEP’s Asia and the Pacific Office will implement the initiative. [UNEP Press Release] [Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan Press Release]

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