The Mirpuri Foundation was invited to participate as a plenary speaker at “From research to action: Responding to plastic pollution through science”, an international summit co-hosted by the Global Council for Science and the Environment, the French Embassy Office of Science and Technology and Long Island University.

The two-day transatlantic summit took place at Long Island University, New York, with the aim to advance ongoing work on plastic pollution led by French and American universities and other research institutions, while offering effective practices to make science more accessible to decision-makers.

Representing the Mirpuri Foundation, Ana Agostinho shared the ongoing work to address single-use plastic in a virtual plenary session titled “Reenvisioned Solutions to Plastic Pollution”.

The presentation covered the organization’s practical actions related to plastic, such as the promotion of beach clean-ups and the support of Hi Fly airline’s plastic free flights, as well as the marketing campaigns that aim to raise awareness of plastic pollution. A special emphasis was put on “The Good Bottle”, an innovative 100% biodegradable and fast-deteriorating package, launched last year, that was developed by the Mirpuri Foundation in collaboration with Fibrenamics – Minho University.

Other relevant speakers of the event included Jesse Ausubel (Chair, Richard Lounsbery Foundation Outpacing Plastic Pollution through Science and Innovation), Heidi Savelli-Soderberg (Marine Litter Lead, Global Partnership on Marine Litter, UN Environment Programme), Angèle Préville (Senator, French Parliament), and many distinguished researchers from several areas.

Plastic pollution is accumulating at an alarming pace in our ecosystems. According to an assessment released at the end of 2021 by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), there is a sharp growth in recent years of plastic waste emissions, or leakage, into aquatic ecosystems, which is on track to nearly triple by 2040 if action is not taken to control plastic emissions from source to sea.

This Summit provided an opportunity to address initiatives and projects, leveraging the value of sharing transboundary knowledge on this pressing problem.