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Countries commit to ocean pollution campaign
Nearly 40 countries have joined the UN Environment's CleanSeas campaign.

Chile, Oman, Sri Lanka and South Africa join UN Environment initiative

Some 40 countries have committed to a United Nations-led campaign against marine litter and ocean pollution.

On Monday (4 December), it was announced that Chile, Oman, Sri Lanka and South Africa will be joining the UN Environment's CleanSeas initiative, which includes measures such as plastic bag bans, new marine reserves and drives to increase recycling.

The four countries announced their support during the UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya (4 - 6 December).

“For too long, we have treated the ocean as a bottomless dumping ground for plastic, sewage and other waste,” said Erik Solheim, head of UN Environment. “The countries supporting CleanSeas are showing the leadership we need in order to end this abuse, and protect the marine resources on which millions depend for their livelihoods.”

Minister of environment for Sri Lanka, Anura Dissanayake, added, "Sri Lanka is taking bold action to turn the tide on plastics. We have banned plastic bags and are now working to reduce the number of plastic bottles in the country. We want to be a green and blue beacon of hope in Asia and do everything we can to keep the seas clean.”

Nearly 40 countries from Kenya to Canada and Indonesia to Brazil have joined the UN’s CleanSeas campaign, accounting for more than 50 per cent of the world’s coastline. The commitments made by the newest CleanSeas members are:

    •    Sri Lanka will implement a ban on single-use plastic products from 1 January 2018, step up the separation and recycling of waste, and set the goal of making its ocean and coasts “pollution-free” by 2030.
    •    Chile is legislating to extend producer responsibility and encourage recycling and establishing more marine protected areas.
    •    Chilean cities are banning plastic bags in advance of a planned national ban.
    •    South Africa will step up its beach cleanup program and prioritise action on tyres, electronic waste, lighting and paper and packaging. This includes extended producer responsibility for plastic packaging.

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Giraffe Conservation Foundation named BVNA’s charity of the year

News Story 1
 BVNA president Wendy Nevins has named The Giraffe Conservation Foundation as the association’s charity of the year for 2017/2018.

The Giraffe Conservation Foundation dedicates its work to a sustainable future for wild giraffe populations. Wendy Nevins said: ‘I have chosen the Giraffe Conservation Foundation for the BVNA Charity of the Year because I have always thought Giraffes were magnificent animals.

‘I also think it is important that we look at the wider issue of conservation and education across all species.’  

News Shorts
Scientists win award for openness in animal research

UK scientists have won an award for the 360ş Laboratory Animal Tours project, which offered the public an online, interactive tour of four research facilities that are usually restricted access.

The project won a public engagement award at the Understanding Animal Research (UAR) Openness Awards, which recognise UK research facilities for transparency on their use of animals in research, as well as innovation in communicating with the public.

The tour was created by the Pirbright Institute, the University of Oxford, the University of Bristol and MRC Harwell Institute.