UN agencies formally cement partnership to tackle maritime litter and help deliver SDG 14

Partnerships are essential in tackling the global issue of marine plastic litter. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) have formally signed an agreement to move forward and jointly implement the GloLitter Partnerships Project, initially launched in December 2019, with funding from Norway, to prevent and reduce marine plastic litter from shipping and fisheries (read more here).

The agreement specifies how the agencies will jointly execute the project and marks the next step towards many strategic partnerships anticipated under the project. Both agencies will now reach out to their respective fields to strengthen cooperation, not least private sector participation through a Global Industry Alliance.

The GloLitter project will help developing countries to identify opportunities to prevent and reduce marine litter, including plastic litter, from within the maritime transport and fisheries sectors, and to decrease the use of plastics in these industries. It will identify opportunities to re-use and recycle plastics. It will directly help to achieve one of the of the specific targets in the global Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 14 – to “prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution, by 2025”.

The agreement was signed on 14 April 2020 by Dr. Jose Matheickal, Chief of the Department of Partnerships and Projects, IMO, and Roberto Ridolfi, Assistant Director General of FAO.

Countries are invited to submit their expressions of interest to be part of the project by 30 April.