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Media Advisories:

The Debris Debate: Surfing for Solutions to Marine Litter

When: 2.00pm, Tuesday, 22 March (Hawaii time / GMT -10)

Where: Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort, Honolulu, Hawaii


  • David de Rothschild, adventurer and environmentalist
  • April Crow, Global Sustainable Packaging Manager, Coca-Cola Company
  • Steve Russell, Vice President of Plastics, American Chemistry Council
  • David Osborn, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
  • Kris McElwee, U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

To participate by telephone:

  • For those in the United States, dial: +1-866-836-3307
  • For those outside the United States, dial: +1-203-310-7952
  • Participant code: 610811

Marine debris – such as plastic waste, discarded fishing nets and industrial products – poses a serious threat to wildlife, livelihoods and human health. Some 8 million items of marine litter are thought to enter the world’s oceans and seas every day. Furthermore, new research suggests that plastic broken down into small fragments in the ocean may absorb a range of toxic chemicals linked to cancer. These may impact the reproductive processes of humans and wildlife. Solutions to the fast-growing problem of marine debris are needed more than ever before.

The Debris Debate will bring together leading marine litter experts and industry representatives to discuss new ways to tackle the problem. The panel also includes explorer David de Rothschild, a leading voice on marine debris and the skipper of the Plastiki, a vessel made entirely of plastic bottles, which crossed the Pacific Ocean last year.

Media accreditations for the 5th International Marine Debris Conference are still available. Please visit for more details

Media contacts:

  • Bryan Coll, UNEP Newsdesk/Nairobi, on Tel. +254 20 762 3088 or +254 731 666 214, E-mail:
  • Elisabeth Guilbaud-Cox, Head of Communications, UNEP Regional Office for North America, on +1 (202) 812-2100, E-mail:
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