Commonwealth Clean Ocean Alliance – Abandoned, Lost and Discarded Fishing gear: Challenges and Solutions

Event date: 27 March 2024, 13:00 - 28 March 2024, 0:00 (GMT)
abandoned fishing net

Join us for a knowledge exchange event hosted by DEFRA, IUK Business Connect, and the Commonwealth Secretariat, designed for policymakers, industry professionals, and academia, which seeks to foster collaboration and exchange insights on the multifaceted challenges posed by Abandoned, Lost and Discarded Fishing Gear (ALDFG).

Providing an overview of the current state of ghost fishing gear globally, this event will discuss economic and social implications on the Blue Economy, technical and innovative solutions, as well as the role the Global Plastics Treaty will play on existing regulations. Register to be part of this engaging webinar and contribute to the collective effort to tackle one of the most pressing issues affecting our oceans.

Date & Times

Wed, Mar 27, 2024 1:00 PM – 3:00 PM GMT

Wed, Mar 27, 2024 10:00 PM – Thu, Mar 28, 2024 12:00 AM GMT


To exchange insights on the challenge of ALDFG and how it can be tackled (problem, collection, solutions)


1. Opening Remarks 

  • Welcome and introductions – Denise Goldsmith, Marine Plastics Manager, Innovate UK 
  • Overview of the importance of addressing ALDFG in the Commonwealth countries - Defra

2. Summary of global impacts of ALDFG 

Webinar 1. Nienke Van Der Burgt, GloLitter Partnerships 
Webinar 2. Kirsten Gilardi, Chair of the GESAMP Working Group 43 on Sea-based sources of marine plastic litter 

  • Overview of the current state of ghost fishing gear globally  
  • Impact on marine life and ecosystems (entanglement & pollution) 
  • Economic and social implications for Commonwealth nations – Blue economy  

3. Challenges, barriers & potential solutions - one solution doesn’t fit all. 

Webinar 1. Joel Baziuk & Hannah Pragnall-Raasch, Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) 
Webinar 2. Joel Baziuk & Ingrid Giskes, Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI)  

  • Challenges faced and successful initiatives implemented 
  • Overview of the breadth of technical and Innovative solutions 
  • Interventions - need to be across the whole life cycle of fishing gear
  • Opportunities for collaboration on technology solutions

4. Video showcase of examples of case studies, projects and solutions:

  • GloLitter partnerships project - Nienke Van Der Burgt/Kirsten Gilardi
  • Circular design of fishing gear - Claire Potter, Circular designer, Sussex University
  • Valorising end of life fishing gear – Ian Falconer, Fishy Filaments
  • Baseline study of ghost gear - Anthony Gallagher, Evolved Research
  • Polymers – Sally Beken, UKCPN

4. Global Plastic Treaty – How is ghost gear/fishing gear reflected in the treaty?  Regulatory Frameworks and Enforcement  

  • Webinars 1&2 - Amy Youngman/Christina Dixon – Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) 
  • Existing regulations related to ghost fishing gear
  • Identification of gaps in enforcement and potential improvements 
  • Exploration of international collaboration for effective regulation
  • Challenges faced for disposing or and recycling gear types 
  • Standardisation/reduction of numbers of polymers in gear types

5. Q&A – speaker panel – an opportunity for discussion and sharing perspective 

6. Closing remarks – Blue Charter

Visit UKCPN for ALDFG-related queries: UKCPN website