Circular Ocean Hosts Ireland’s first Scenario Exploration Event
Date of issue: March 29, 2017
European Event Gets Caught Up In Nets!
Date of issue: 29th March 2017
Circular Ocean’s Irish Partners, Cork County Council Initiative “Macroom E” have today welcomed delegates from Norway, Greenland, Scotland and England to join with local stakeholders at an event in County Hall, Cork to discuss the future challenges and opportunities around the subject of marine plastics with a particular focus on waste fishing nets and rope.
The session was led and facilitated by Dr. Laurent Bontoux from the EU Policy Lab with support from,
Professor Martin Charter from The Centre for Sustainable Design. The Circular Ocean “Scenario Exploration Session” was organised by experts from the EU Policy Lab based at the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC) in Brussels. The approach for today’s event has been developed from a two year foresight study on the future of eco-industries and eco-innovation in Europe to 2035.
The issue of Marine Plastics is of ever increasing international concern, featuring heavily in the European Commission’s Marine Strategy Framework Directive (MSFD) which recommends a circular economy approach which puts the emphasis on preventing waste and on recycling and reuse of materials and products in the first place, as the best solution to the marine litter problem. The event today exhibited a showcase of innovative products made from recycled nets including a local creation by Kinsale based Mamukko who incorporated end of life fishing nets into the design of one of their award winning upcycled bags.
Speaking at the event, Michelle Green, Communications Manager said “We are delighted to have had the opportunity to welcome representatives of the Cork fishing community to this unique event and hope that today’s discussion will provide a platform for future collaboration with other agencies in seeking solutions to the challenge of marine plastic waste.”
Funded under the ERDF Interreg VB Northern Periphery and Arctic (NPA) Programme, the focus of the Circular Ocean project is to seek opportunities for recovery and reuse of waste Fishing Nets & Rope, with a view to benefiting local economies. In addition to highlighting the environmental impacts of waste Fishing Nets, the project is currently undertaking various streams of research into the potential applications of nets in areas such as wastewater treatment, 3D printing and as a reinforcement material in the construction sector. Circular Ocean is also offering support to SME’s with a view to highlighting the prospective economic opportunities to SME’s in establishing a product/business utilising waste nets, while promoting the concept of circular economy and eco-innovation.
Partners involved in the Circular Ocean project include the Environmental Research Institute of the North Highland College UHI, Scotland; Macroom E, Ireland; The Centre for Sustainable Design, University for the Creative Arts, England; the Arctic Technology Centre, Greenland and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Norway.