UNESCO to set up center in ECNU to address marine debris and pollution


The 12th Intergovernmental Session of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission for the Western Pacific (IOC-WESTPAC) took place from April 2-5 at the Philippine International Convention Center in Manila.

The 12th Intergovernmental Session of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission for the Western Pacific  (IOC-WESTPAC).

Li Daoji, director of the Research Center of Marine Debris and professor with the State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Costal Research in ECNU, and his colleague, Dr. Wang Lu, were invited to attend the meeting, a joint project of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) IOC-WESTPAC and the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines.

As the chief scientist of WESTPAC's research project on distribution, source, trend and impacts on marine microplastics in the Asia-Pacific Region (APR), Li delivered a report on the progress of the project in the past two years as well as its working plans for subsequent development. He also updated attendees on the progress of the UNESCO/IOC Regional Training and Research Center on Plastic Marine Debris and Microplastics (RTRC-PMDMP) which will be established at ECNU.

Professor Li Daoji delivers his speech at the meeting.

Executive Secretary of UNESCO/IOC, Vladimir Ryabinin; WESTPAC Chair, Vo Si Tuan; and representatives of member states and experts were very satisfied with the progress of the project for which they gave the go-ahead to set up the center to be led by Li.

The center will be committed to upgrading the level and capabilities of marine plastic pollution research in APR and other parts of the world through observation, source and sink progress, and ecological risk assessment and control. Additionally, the training of young talents for IOC member states will be carried out to improve upon the capabilities of Asia-Pacific countries to address issues on marine debris and pollution.

ECNU president Qian Xuhong expressed his gratitude for UNSECO/ IOC's decision to locate the center in ECNU, and promised continuous support for their work and greater efforts by ECNU to protect regional and global marine environment.

Group photo of all meeting members at IOC-WESTPAC.

The meeting initially aimed to review the U.N. 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the strategy and development plan for sustainable development of marine sciences in the coming decades between 2021 and 2030. There was also an address to formulate a practicable action plan for the implementation of such initiatives. The establishment of the ECNU center is one way to carry out this action plan.

Edited By Linlan Zhang    Proofread by Joshua Mayfield    Reviewed by Wenjun Guo


East China Normal University