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Commonwealth Round Table consultations on ocean plastics pollution

U.K. hosted a Round Table consultative session to discuss ocean plastics pollution at U.K. Home Office on July 17, 2018.

Commonwealth Blue Charter was adopted at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) in London, 20 April 2018 during which member countries agreed to cooperate towards attainment of the myriad of ocean-related commitments that they face, with particular focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially SDG 14 (Life Below Water).

U.K. Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Environment Ms. Thérèse Coffey MP welcomed High Commissioners and senior officers from member states of the Commonwealth to the event and emphasised the need of the Commonwealth to deliver on its collective ambition to lead the world in plastic waste management. She invited countries to join the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance (CCOA) that is co-championed by UK and Vanuatu.

Deputy High Commissioner of India Mr. Srinivas Gotru underlined India’s aim to drastically stem the flow of plastic from the 1.3 billion people living in the fastest growing large economy in the world. He said that India, which has 7,500 km of coastline, holds dear the health of its maritime ecosystem. He shared with other member states the many initiatives in this direction announced during the World Environment Day hosted by India in June, 2018. He spoke of India’s announcement of a national marine litter action campaign and of a programme to measure how much plastic enters India’s coastal waters. India’s ambition to eliminate all single-use plastic in the country by 2022 is considered by many as the most ambitious yet of the global actions to combat marine plastic pollution.