Sri Lanka and UN collaborate to fight plastic pollution

The CounterMEASURE project has developed an approach to tracking plastic pollution, using frontier technology like machine learning, GIS mapping and drones

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The Government of Sri Lanka is set to partner with the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) to tackle the root causes of plastic pollution in the country’s rivers.

The CounterMEASURE project has developed an approach to tracking plastic pollution, using frontier technology like machine learning, GIS mapping, drones and microplastic sampling.

The methods have been tested and deployed along the Mekong River in Cambodia, Lao PDR, Thailand, Vietnam and along the Ganges and its tributaries in India.

Findings from the projects are used to develop bespoke policy recommendations for lawmakers and regulators at local, regional and national levels.

Anil Jasinghe, Secretary for Sri Lanka’s Ministry of Environment said: “The CounterMEASURE project will be a boost to the Surakimu Ganga programme initiated by the Ministry of Environment to make all our rivers clean. The objectives of CounterMEASURE are very much in line with Sri Lanka’s efforts to minimise ocean plastic pollution through land based activities.

“It requires the active participation of the public and private sectors, supported by a strong awareness. The government cannot do this alone and we appreciate the UN Environment Programme’s initiative to bring global experience on hotspot analysis and cutting-edge technology.”

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