More than 2 people helped clean up the oceans in a "Marine Waste Action!"

This nationwide project is led by CCV de Tavira and has several Algarve partners

More than 2 volunteers participated in more than 150 activities to combat marine litter and protect the ocean, across the country, under the project “Ação Marinho Lixo!”, which has as partners the three Centros Ciência Viva (CCV) in the Algarve and has had the participation of other entities in the region, namely schools.

One year after the beginning of this nature conservation project, there are already encouraging numbers to show, especially given the «year of unexpected challenges» that 2020 was.

According to the CCV of Tavira, which leads the consortium that launched the “Ação Lixo Marinho!”, in a time of pandemic, “the project's execution was put to the test, but the twelve partner entities involved in it were able to adapt to the conditions imposed by the crisis caused by the spread of Covid-19'.

"Despite the limitations, numerous events were held to educate and raise awareness of the problem of marine litter and its growing environmental, economic and social consequences," he added.

From «the most usual beach cleanings (in which more and more people are showing interest)», to educational activities carried out in the school context, «through more unusual events, such as the marine litter stand installed in the Tavira Municipal Market during the summer season», many actions were carried out.

Many of them had the invaluable help of local school communities, bearing in mind that "the schools represent eleven of the 26 entities that have participated in the actions of this project, which has also relied on the collaboration of municipalities, companies and voluntary groups."

And there were no hands to measure, as the problem of marine litter, "contrary to what one might initially think", worsened during the pandemic, "not only because there was a sudden increase in the use of personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves and disinfectant gel, but also because their inappropriate disposal causes them to end up polluting the ocean and coastal areas».

«That's why the project “Ação Lixo Marinho!” in 2021 renews its commitment to continue carrying out multiple activities that promote greater awareness of the problem posed by marine litter, namely plastic, and to mobilize the various layers of the population to reduce litter on our coastline», guarantees the Tavirense CCV.

An example of actions that will be carried out across the country, within the scope of this project, «are the seasonal monitoring of marine litter on beaches, which usually recruit a considerable number of participants, as they are mainly carried out with the cooperation of local schools».

The Marine Waste Action project! it is part of the theme of Ocean Literacy and is the result of a consortium led by the Centro Ciência Viva de Tavira, which includes 11 more Portuguese entities linked to the dissemination of science (Centro Ciência Viva do Algarve, Centro Ciência Viva de Lagos, Centro Ciência Viva do Lousal, Centro Ciência Viva of Vila do Conde and Expolab – Centro Ciência Viva), research (ARDITI – Regional Agency for the Development of Research, Technology and Innovation, the Portuguese Institute of the Sea and Atmosphere, and the University of Algarve) and environmental management (Portuguese Environment Agency and Cascais Ambiente) and environmental protection (Marmeu – Association for the Defense of the Environment).

This project is co-financed by the Fundo Azul, a financial incentive mechanism of the Directorate-General for the Policy of the Sea aimed at sponsoring activities related to the domain of the sea, including those that promote the protection and monitoring of the marine environment.


Photos: CCV de Tavira