The European Commission has announced that it is is joining forces with the United Nations Environment Programme and other international partners to launch a coalition of aquariums to fight plastic pollution.
Permanent activities will be organised in aquariums all over the world and they will also be invited to change their procurement policies, for example in canteens and shops, to eliminate all single use plastic items.
The aim of the campaign is to have on board at least 200 aquariums by 2019, thereby raising public awareness about plastic pollution and, with to date 106 confirmed aquariums from 33 countries, among which are 67 based in the EU.
This campaign announcement follows the overwhelming vote in the European Parliament this week on the Commission’s proposal to ban certain single use plastics by 2021.
The call for global cooperation is one of the official commitments to be announced by the European Union at the 5th edition of the “Our Ocean” international conference taking place on the 29-30th of October in Bali.
EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries Karmenu Vella, has said. “the European Commission has been working for 18 months to instigate and build this global coalition. Aquariums are a window to our ocean.”
“With their collections and their educational programmes, they show us what we need to protect, and they inspire the ocean lovers of tomorrow. Millions of people visit aquariums around the world every year. This will mobilise them to rethink the way we use plastic,” he added.