Foamed plastics in a circular economy

29 March 2019

On the 27th of March, Cefas held the first UK participatory session with foamed plastics stakeholders of the OceanWise project.

OceanWise is a three year Interreg funded project which has a team of 13 European partners from 5 Atlantic Area countries working together. The project is focused on foamed plastics, specifically Expanded and Extruded Polystyrene (EPS & XPS) and is looking for solutions to reduce this type of marine litter. OSPAR is an associated partner for the project, which is driven by the EU-Marine Strategy Framework Directive and the OSPAR Convention’s Regional Action Plan on Marine Litter.

A wide range of stakeholders gathered at the workshop, from EPS manufacturers, policy makers, local councillors, retailers and suppliers of alternative materials, some of whom would not ordinarily meet to discuss the problem of EPS and XPS ending up as marine litter.

Participants were kept busy with activities such as identifying different types of foam, voting on scenarios for EPS/ XPS, and identifying concerns and opportunities in relation to the European Commission’s ‘Action on Plastics’ as a priority in the Circular Economy Action Plan.

There was a lot of interest in the project and the stakeholders worked together to come up with a collective agenda for future workshops.

Similar interactive workshops have been conducted in Ireland, France, Spain and Portugal, and reports summarising the results of these workshops will be released in the next few months.

More information about the OceanWise project can be found here

The meeting report can be found here