Effectiveness of investments in litter abatement strategies (facilities, policies and outreach) in reducing input of debris into the environment

Project Outline and Objectives:

As plastic production increases globally we are, in turn, seeing a rise of litter lost into the marine environment. To combat this issue, numerous abatement strategies have been employed that target reducing litter from local sources. However, these strategies are under-researched in Australia and internationally. Given that litter not only reduces the economic value of an area but also creates a problem to public health, knowing what litter abatement strategies work is imperative to reducing litter entering the ocean. This PhD programme aims to determine a potential link between the density of the marine debris on the coastlines around Australia and the effectiveness of existing local litter abatement strategies.

Specifically the project will:

  • Determine whether the presence/absence of particular litter policies, infrastructure and awareness-raising campaigns reduce litter loads of an area
  • Discern the most cost efficient strategies at reducing litter in the environment
  • Identify environmental and social indicators for target areas of illegal dumping and littering
  • Identify high frequency litter items in a specific area and determine the success of a targeted litter item reduction strategy.
Phd Student:

Kathryn Willis

Supervisors:

Joanna Vince, UTAS
Marcus Haward, UTAS
Denise Hardesty, CSIRO
Chris Wilcox, CSIRO

Collaborative links:

This project includes a collaboration study with Healthy Waterways in Queensland (Australia).

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