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A Voice for our Ocean

ADVISORY: Leading Conservationists, Scientists Available to Discuss Watershed Moments for the Plastic Pollution Crisis this Earth Month

Ocean Conservancy Experts Available to Brief Reporters on Links Between Plastics Crisis and the Ocean; Earth Month Theme is “Planet versus Plastics”

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Several events in April provide an opportunity to spotlight one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time: the plastics pollution crisis. Because a majority of this pollution makes its way into the ocean, where it endangers human, animal and planetary health, the ocean has long been ground zero for the plastics problem. 

Ocean Conservancy experts who are actively engaged in U.S. and global efforts to curtail the production of plastics are available to comment around the following events:

  • Experts can brief you on what to expect at the Our Ocean Conference in Greece (April 15-17), which is expected to generate action on ocean conservation goals. The U.S. and other countries worldwide will send large delegations to the event and are expected to make a series of announcements. 
  • Negotiators from around the world will gather in Ottawa (April 23-29) to hash out the details of the UN treaty to end the plastic pollution crisis. Ocean Conservancy experts who will attend can brief you on the current state of negotiations and what elements are central to a strong treaty. 
  • With Planet vs. Plastics the theme of this year’s “Earth Month,” which culminates on Earth Day (April 22), Ocean Conservancy experts can explain why ending the plastic pollution crisis is particularly urgent for the ocean. They are experts on microplastics, state and federal policies to prevent plastic pollution, chemical recycling, efforts to curtail “ghost gear” (plastic fishing gear lost or discarded at sea that endangers and kills sea life), and more.


  • Aarthi Ananthanarayanan, Director, Climate and Plastics Initiative 
  • Dr. Anja Brandon, Associate Director of U.S. Plastics Policy
  • Edith Cecchini, Director of the International Plastics Team
  • Dr. George Leonard, Chief Scientist
  • Nicholas Mallos, Vice President of Conservation, Ocean Plastics
  • Felipe E. Victoria, Senior Manager, Multilateral Affairs and International Plastics

Experts are available by phone or Zoom and can discuss:

  • The UN plastics treaty negotiations and priority targets for inclusion in the agreement
  • Progress on plastic reduction efforts in the U.S.–at the national and state levels
  • Recent, game-changing microplastics research revealing the extent to which these plastics enter our body through the protein we eat
  • Polling data on U.S. attitudes and perceptions on plastic pollution 
  • The scourge of ghost gear and why Canada and the U.S. are world leaders in preventing this deadly plastic fishing gear from killing sea life.
  • The intersection of plastics and climate change.

Events/Dates in April:

  • April 10 – TBC: Ocean Conservancy will hold a press call to brief reporters on the critical topics to look out for at the UN plastics treaty negotiations. 
  • 10-12 April 2024: The UN Ocean Decade Conference |  Barcelona, Spain.
  • 15-17 April 2024: The 9th Our Ocean Conference | Athens, Greece.
  • 22 April 2024: Earth Day
  • 23-29 April 2024: The International Negotiating Committee developing a treaty to address plastic pollution will hold its fourth of five negotiating sessions | Ottawa, Canada.

CONTACT: For interviews or information, please contact Susan Tonassi ([email protected]) in Washington or Florence Wood  ([email protected]; +44 7491 147 576).



Ocean Conservancy is working to protect the ocean from today’s greatest global challenges. Together with our partners, we create evidence-based solutions for a healthy ocean and the wildlife and communities that depend on it. For more information, visit, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.  

Media Contact

Susan Tonassi


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