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martedì 13 ottobre 2015

Race for Water Odyssey continues campaign against plastic pollution in Cape Town



The Race for Water Odyssey against plastic pollution continues in South Africa after the loss of its flagship trimaran, damaged after it capsized in the Indian Ocean, and a fruitful scientific stopover in Rodrigues. During Race for Water's stay in Cape Town, the team will conclude its observations on the waste accumulation zone in the Indian Ocean before returning to the Atlantic. 

Race for Water Odyssey is in Cape Town this week to raise awareness of plastic pollution and for an exchange of views – their flagship remains in Rodrigues undergoing repairs after a capsize on 12 September. Located where the Indian and Atlantic Oceans meet, South Africa represents a turning point for the expedition. It marks the end of the Indian Ocean waste accumulation analysis that included Chagos and Rodrigues and the beginning of the final phase of the international project that started seven months ago, with its return to the Atlantic Ocean. The Indian Ocean held a number of surprises as Kim van Arkel, scientific advisor to the foundation, on site with the team at the Mauritius stopover, explains:

"Rodrigues Island is located in the middle of the Indian Ocean waste accumulation zone. We found a high number of macro plastics, in particular on Gravier beach and Gombrani Island. In general terms, the quantity of macro waste was significant despite regular cleaning operations in these areas. Micro plastic quantities were also notable, although not as widespread as at other stopovers in the North Pacific Gyre."   
A stopover dedicated to scientific research and raising awareness
In Cape Town, Race for Water Odyssey seeks to fulfil its two main objectives: awareness, which it will do through its educational programme at local schools and research, which it will achieve through a scientific discussion at a round table organised in collaboration with the University of Cape Town on October 15th. This meeting will bring together members of the scientific community, NGOs and associations that are active in the fight against plastic pollution. The goal is to discuss the current situation and to identify potential solutions to this global problem.

From Cape Town, Race for Water Odyssey will head to Rio for a final stop before returning to Bordeaux in France, where the 'round the world against plastic pollution' project began. 

Click here for more information about the program in Cape Town.

Click here for more information about the Race for Water Odyssey and the Race for Water foundation.
                  
About the Race for Water Odyssey
Initiated by the Race for Water foundation, the "Race for Water Odyssey" is a unique expedition that aims to draw up the first global assessment of plastic pollution in the ocean by visiting island beaches situated in the 5 trash vortexes. In less than 300 days, over 40,000 nautical miles will be traveled, punctuated by 11 scientific stopovers and 9 outreach stopovers, involving a total of 13 countries. The objective of the expedition is twofold: on the one hand, the goal is to compile a human and environmental assessment of the current state of plastic pollution in the oceans, thanks to scientific and sociological investigations. On the other hand, the expedition wants to raise awareness about the issue of plastic pollution in the ocean in order to bring together the general public, industries, and legislators together against this issue. The Race for Water Odyssey benefits from the support of ISAF, Duke University, Oregon State University, senseFly, Swisscom and Swissnex. 
About the Race for Water Foundation 
The Race for Water Foundation is a charity dedicated to preserving water. Today, water is under severe threat because of plastic pollution and it must be protected. The Foundation aims to bring together the general public, institutions, scientists and decision-makers to fight this pollution that is spoiling our oceans, by initiating programs in three main areas: research, awareness and solutions. To this end, the Race for Water Foundation collaborates with such renowned organizations as UNESCO, UNEP, IUCN, WWF, and WBCSD (World Business Council for Sustainable Development).



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