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2017 Marine Plastics Innovation Challenge - Prediction and Recovery Track

Welcome, 2017 Marine Plastics Innovation Challenge participants!

Marine plastic is an economic, environmental, human health, and aesthetic problem posing a multi-dimensional challenge to humanity, often compared to climate change in terms of impact, breadth, and complexity.

In order to accelerate the search for solutions, UN Environment, in partnership with Think Beyond Plastic™, is inviting university students around the world to submit innovative modeling and tools to help solve the global marine litter problem.

We are looking for the most innovative prediction and/or risk-based recovery tool or methodology to identify and model marine litter hotspots.  These may include areas of high marine litter accumulation, which may vary with storm events; biodiversity hotspots; important fishing grounds and/or fish nurseries; and/or particularly sensitive/fragile areas of the marine ecosystem.  May include improving/testing the use of remote sensing technologies.

Modeling and prediction of transport and accumulation of marine litter and how it impacts certain areas may be developed in conjunction with already existing shipping routes, fishing grounds, marine wildlife migration routes, and/or biodiversity hotspots in order to better prioritize recovery efforts and policy and decision making surrounding the marine litter issue and protected areas.  Modelling and prediction efforts may be undertaken for a range of geographical coverage including the sub-national, national and regional scales.

One winner in each category will be announced at the Sixth International Marine Debris Conference in San Diego, California (March 12-16, 2018). Winners will have the chance to present their ideas at the conference and gain entry into the Think Beyond Plastic annual acceleration program.

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The 2017 Marine Plastics Innovation Challenge is open to any university students who are 18 or above at the time of submissions. The challenge is not open to employees or contractors of Think Beyond Plastics and the United Nations, its specialized agencies, or its Funds or Programmes, including UN Environment. Additionally, any person directly or indirectly involved with organizing the Challenge, or their direct family members, may not take part in the Challenge.

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