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Monitoring workshop & 1st Beach Litter Monitoring Campaign in Morocco

By December 15, 2023News

REMEDIES Monitoring workshop

After the REMEDIES Cluster event REMEDIES, on Novermber 29, partners focused on monitoring both beach and seafloor litter, crucial for our plan to repurpose the collected items. Understanding the types of polymers in the litter is key, which is why we started with a discussion on using handheld NIR devices.

REMEDIES partners are committed to regular marine litter monitoring on beaches, seafloors, and rivers. We held our third workshop on beach litter monitoring in Morocco. Here, we introduced enhancements to our new app and outlined a protocol for effective beach litter monitoring. This includes collecting data and reporting to EMODnet.

We’re excited to share that in Cyclades, Greece, and Sardinia, Italy, our partners will undertake seafloor litter monitoring, guided by the PADI Aware Foundation’s Dive Against Debris survey. We had the pleasure of connecting online with Ms. Emily Deery, a PADI AWARE representative, who shared insights on visual seafloor litter surveys through scuba diving and helped shape our upcoming activities.

In a separate session, we explored ‘Fishing For Litter’, with Mr. Michael Mannart from KIMO the Netherlands & Belgium. He provided a video presentation on monitoring seafloor litter in Cyclades, Greece, and Porquerolles, France, as part of this initiative.

We wrapped up the day looking forward to seeing how beach litter monitoring will unfold in Morocco, which will be the focus of the next day’s session.

Empowering Local Partners: Success and Innovation in Morocco’s First Beach Litter Monitoring Campaign

We’re excited to share the success of our first beach litter monitoring campaign in Morocco, which took place on November 30, 2023. This event, happening just after our General Assembly and monitoring workshop, marks the start of a series of quarterly campaigns. The campaign was spearheaded by our partners VITO and NIC, with invaluable support from Infordata and our local collaborator, Mohamed First University (MOH).

Our goal was to empower our local partners with the skills and knowledge to independently conduct monitoring activities by January 2024, when our regular beach litter monitoring for the REMEDIES project kicks off. A highlight of the event was demonstrating our innovative AI-enabled drones, designed to spot plastic litter on beaches.

The team carried out a detailed monitoring exercise over a 100-meter section of Saidia beach. This specific area will continue to be a focal point in future monitoring. We collected all litter items larger than 2.5 cm, followed by sorting them using the TG ML J-List method. We also identified the types of polymers in recyclable plastic litter using the handheld NIR PlasTell by MATOHA. Simultaneously, we tested our REMEDIES mobile app, developed by Infordata, for categorizing and reporting litter. This app proved to be an effective tool, streamlining our reporting process. We plan to further refine the app based on this experience, aiming for a public release in February 2024.

The day was not only productive but also enjoyable for our partners, who spent time on the beach collecting a total of 747 litter items, weighing in at 13.39 kg, on selected 100 m of Saidia beach stretch.