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This series of interactive webinars brought researchers and stakeholders together to explore the problem of marine litter in the Barents Sea. Experts shared information on tools and technologies for mapping and monitoring, ways to identify sources of marine litter, and prospects for international collaboration. The webinars also covered action plans to address the marine litter challenge and recommendations from the Arctic Council working groups, and discussed their relevance and application in the Barents Sea region. Participants had the opportunity to ask questions and engage in interactive polls.

We invited speakers and panellists from a variety of organisations and backgrounds to discuss and explore the topic of marine litter in the Barents Sea. Building on the UArctic Thematic Network on Arctic Plastic Pollution, participants included; scientists from research institutions in Norway and Russia, representatives from NGOs and fisher unions, as well as speakers from Arctic Council working groups and UNEP.

The webinars were part of the Barents Sea Leadership on Marine Litter project, led by GRID-Arendal in collaboration with the Northern Arctic Federal Univeristy (NArFU), the Kola Science Centre of the Russian Academy of Sciences, the UN Environment Programme and UArctic, and was financed by Norway’s Ministry of Climate and Environment.

These webinars took place in the spring and summer of 2021. If you are interested in the recording of these webinars, please get in touch with us at torjus.eckhoff@grida.no.

First Episode

The first episode is titled “Marine litter problem in Barents Sea: what do we know about the state and sources, what are the knowledge gaps?”. This episode focused on the most recent research on what we know about the current status of marine litter in the Barents Region, told by researchers and experts on the field.

Date: 22 April

Time: 14:00 – 15:30 (Moscow time, UTC+3)

Platform: Zoom

Main Speaker

Denis Moiseev

Denis Moiseev has been the Research Director of Murmansk Marine Biological Institute since 2008 and has broad experience in marine research as well as cross-border cooperation. Denis will be the perfect guide for an introduction to the region's marine litter issues.


Marthe Larsen Haarr

Marthe, who works at the marine consultancy firm SALT, is a marine biologist and accomplished researcher. Currently she is mostly focusing on quantification and spatial analysis of littering and will help us better understand the extent of plastic pollution today.

Alexei Bambulyak:

Alexei is a senior adviser and the Russia coordinator for the Norwegian research company Akvaplan-niva. He has over 20 years of experience in running international environment and shipping projects and is currently also doing a part-time PhD at NTNU in Norway.

Amy Lusher

Amy is a researcher at the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA) and an active contributor to the Arctic Council´s working group on Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP). She is a leading expert on microplastics' impact on marine environments.


Thomas Maes

Thomas, is a marine biologist with extensive experience in marine litter research, and is currently working for GRID-Arendal, a Norwegian non-profit environmental communication centre. In addition to an impressive portfolio of published papers, he is a great spokesperson for the cause of addressing marine litter.

Second Episode

In the second episode of the Marine Litter in the Barents Sea webinar series, we focused on how to improve monitoring and different analysis methods for marine litter. We will go through the key recommendations for monitoring of marine litter on Arctic and Subarctic shorelines by the Arctic Council Working Group AMAP, and discuss how the Barents Sea should be monitored and how different methods can best complement each other.

Date: May 27th

Time: 14:00 – 15:30 (Moscow time, UTC+3)

Platform: Zoom


Jakob Strand

Jakob is a senior researcher at the Institute of Bioscience at Aarhus University, Denmark, and is a member of the Arctic Council´s Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP). He has an impressive competence in research, monitoring and assessment of hazardous substances in the marine environment, and will in this episode speak about AMAP´s new recommendations for monitoring litter.

Jannike Falk-Andersson

Jannike is a senior researcher with an interdisciplinary background, working at the marine consultancy firm SALT. She will present her paper on beach litter deep dives, which is a method aiming at improved understanding of sources of and behaviour behind littering.

Alexander Saburov

Aleksander is the Director of the Arctic Center for strategic studies and associate professor of World History Department at NarFU. He has also had a central role in the organization of the Arctic Floating University. He will talk to us about the link between research on marine litter and creating awareness among the general public.

Maria Pogojeva

Maria is a senior researcher at the State Oceanographic Institute in Moscow, which is responsible for collecting monitoring data from the seas around Russia. She will share from her work on the joint experience in marine litter monitoring in Russian-Norwegian projects.


Tina Schoolmeester

Tina is the head of the Polar and Climate programme at GRID-Arendal. She has vast experience in international collaboration and project cooperation among actors working in the Arctic, and will use this experience to guide us through the episode.

Third Episode

In the final episode of the Marine Litter in the Barents Sea webinar, we focused on solutions and how to engage different stakeholders to reduce and prevent marine litter pollution. PAME´s new Regional Action Plan on Marine Litter in the Arctic was presented, and we discussed how this action plan can be adopted in the Barents Region.

Date: June 10th

Time: 14:00 – 15:30 (Moscow time, UTC+3)

Platform: Zoom

Main speaker

Anne Berteig

Anne is Senior Advisor at the Ministry of Climate and Environment, Norway, and the representative of Norway in the Arctic Council Working Group Protection of the Arctic Marine Environment (PAME). She has a long experience on bilateral marine environmental collaboration between Russia and Norway. She is therefore the perfect candidate to present and discuss PAME´s Regional Action Plan on Marine Litter.

Other speakers

Kine Martinussen

Kine is responsible for Keep Norway Beautiful´s work to prevent marine litter, is their representative to the Global Partnership on Marine Litter, and is leading the biggest network of actors working against marine litter in Norway. She will talk about how to engage the public in marine litter issues as well as other interesting topics.

Alexey Golenkevich

Alexey is the coordinator of sustainable fisheries projects at the WWF-Russia with wide experience in collaborative efforts on protecting marine ecosystems in the Barents Sea.

Heidi Savelli-Soderberg coordinates marine litter activities within the framework of UNEP’s Global Partnership on Marine Litter. She has worked with a myriad of topics related to coastal and marine management for the almost 20 years. She will link actions in the Barents Sea with the global processes.

Jan Henrik Sandberg

Jan Henrik has been affiliated with the Norwegian Fishermen's Association since 2006 and has for the last 10 years been a senior advisor with responsibility for research, area- and environmental cases in the coastal zone. He will speak to us about how fishers can be integrated in limiting marine litter.


Thomas Maes

Thomas, a marine biologist with extensive experience in marine litter research, is currently working for GRIDArendal, a Norwegian non-profit environmental communication centre. In addition to an impressive portfolio of published papers, he is a great spokesperson for the cause of addressing marine litter.

Release date: 13 Apr 2021


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