Curated Session: Marine Litter

Plastic Waste and Marine Litter: Minimizing Our Footprint (2 CEUs)

Monday, September 25, 2017
16:00 – 18:00
Room 322

Moderator: Daniella Russo, Founder and CEO, Think Beyond Plastic™, Inc., California

It has been estimated in 2014 that more than five trillion particles of plastic were afloat in the ocean, weighing more than 250,000 tonnes. Plastic is now omnipresent in the ocean, and if we do nothing, there might be more plastic than fish in the ocean by 2050. Plastics and other persistent organic pollutants have been found in large quantities 10km deep down the Marianas trench. Marine litter, which is mainly composed of plastic, is a major environmental and public health problem that needs to be addressed now. How can we minimize our footprint?

This session will address the following questions:

  • How can we generalize a behavioral change toward the end of marine dumping?
  • How can the waste pickers be fairly included in the process of cleaning the marine environment?
  • In which ways can international cooperation contribute to the management of plastics in SIDS?
  • What knowledge could be gathered to make current efforts more efficient?
  • How can we prevent poisoning of local fishing communities?


Sivapalan Kathiravale, Environmental Preservation and Innovation Centre Sdn Bhd, Malaysia

Sivapalan Kathiravale

Sivapalan Kathiravale currently heads the newly establish Centre of Excellence for Waste Management in Malaysia. He established the Renewable Energy Resource Map for Malaysia under MOSTI. He is a member of the International Advisory (Scientific) Committee for the International Conference on Combustion, Incineration/Pyrolysis and Emission Control series of conference, which is held biannually in Asia. As a technical consultant and advisor to the first pilot scale plant and the consequent scale up to commercial plant for the conversation of Municipal solid waste to refuse Derived Fuel (Patent pending for process and also have won national and international invention awards). Mr. Kathiravale a member of Technical Committee for the evaluation of MSW Treatment Technology for Ministry of Housing and Local Government which is the regulating body for all municipal solid waste matters in Malaysia, including the master plans, treatment technologies and management method for Peninsular Malaysia. Mr. Kathiravale created four new equations to calculate the calorific values of municipal solid waste and refuse derived fuel. He is chairman of the technical committee on Solid Waste in SIRIM for the establishment of Malaysian Standards in the area of solid waste. Mr. Kathiravale was lead auditor in the commissioning of the first of the modern Incinerators in Labuan, Malaysia. Mr. Kathiravale is a member of the Task Force for Renewable Energy which oversees research and development in the field of Renewable Energy. Has published over fifty papers in Malaysian standards, International journals and conferences.

Joi Danielson, Senior Fellow, Program Innovation, Ocean Conservancy, Washington, D.C.

Joi Danielson

Joi Danielson is a Senior Fellow of Program Innovation at the Ocean Conservancy, with the mission of sustainably reducing the volume of plastic waste leaking into the ocean annually by 50% globally by 2025. She is currently solving how to unlock entrepreneurial and private investment interest in waste management by developing market based approaches and piloting innovative technology to maximize the inherent value in waste, thereby reducing the significant financial burden on municipalities to provide full waste collection services to all households. Ms. Danielson is an experienced strategist who enjoys working at the intersection of technology, market forces and the environment. She has ten years of international experience (five years as a McKinsey consultant) shaping and executing commercial and environmental strategy across the ocean, energy, technology, mining, consumer packaged goods and government sectors, with a heavy focus on Asian and African rapidly developing economies.

Carla Friedrich, Programme Officer for Ecosystem Management, United Nations Environment Programme, Regional Office for North America, Washington, D.C.

Carla Friedrich

Carla Friedrich joined UN Environment’s North America Office in February 2012 as a program officer for ecosystem management. Her work spans terrestrial (including freshwater), coastal and marine ecosystems. She also serves as the North America Office focal point for chemicals and waste. Before joining UN Environment, she was an ORISE Fellow at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Wetlands, Oceans and Watersheds. Prior to her work at EPA, she served as the environmental coordinator of the “Proyecto ENLACE del Caño Martín Peña,” a waterway restoration and urban/social development initiative of the government of Puerto Rico. Ms. Friedrich has a Bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras, and two Master’s degrees, the first in conservation biology and sustainable development from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, USA, and the second in international health from the Charité Medical School of Humboldt University and Free University in Berlin, Germany. She is fluent in Spanish, English and German.

Margot Kane, Chief Investment and Financial Officer, Closed Loop Partners, New York

Margot Kane

Margot Kane brings over a decade of investment experience and innovation at the vanguard of the emerging impact investment industry. She joined emerging fund manager Closed Loop Partners in 2016 to oversee financial and investment activities for their flagship $100 million Closed Loop Fund, which invests debt into recycling infrastructure and sustainable manufacturing, as well as their new early stage fund, Closed Loop Ventures, and affiliate Closed Loop Foundation, a not-for-profit that fosters research and development in circular economy solutions. Before joining Closed Loop, Ms. Kane led corporate strategy and innovation for the Calvert Social Investment Foundation, a 20-year-old impact investment fund that has raised and managed over $1 billion in investment capital in global investments for social and financial returns. She previously worked in a commercial lending capacity at a community bank, and at Pathfinder International, an NGO specializing in reproductive health in developing countries. Ms. Kane earned her M.B.A. from University of California-Berkeley and a B.A. from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children.

Spurgeon Molina Miller, Mayor of Guanaja, Islas de Bahia, Honduras

Spurgeon Miller

Bio forthcoming.

Amrita Sinha, Network Manager, Sustainable Solid Waste Systems, C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, United Kingdom

Amrita Sinha

Amrita Sinha manages the Sustainable Waste Systems Network at C40. In this position, Ms. Sinha works with more than 20 global mega cities to facilitate and accelerate the delivery of their strategies for tackling waste management issues to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions and reduce climate change through in-person workshops and virtual platforms. Ms. Sinha also works to develop global and regional partnerships with expert organizations to provide technical and capacity building assistance to cities on waste management actions. Prior to this role, Ms. Sinha worked as a waste prevention adviser with the Lambeth Council in London and supported the Mayor of London’s Olympic and Paralympic program in 2012. Before moving to London, Ms. Sinha was a program analyst on the Waste and Wastewater Team at the Clinton Climate Initiative in India. Ms. Sinha holds a Master’s degree in environment, with specialization in water resources management from The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and a Bachelor’s degree in environmental science from the University of Delhi, India.