GIC participated in the United Nations Environment Program’s second annual Sea of Solutions conference this past week from 24-26 Nov 2020.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Sea of Solutions 2020 was held online as a virtual event.

Dr. Kavinda Gunasekara, Associate Director of the Geoinformatics Center, gave a lightning talk during a parallel session on Environmental innovation, digital transformation and frontier technologies to tackle plastic pollution. Dr. Gunasekara’s presentation focused on GIC’s development of deep learning algorithms for identification of riverside plastic waste from 360° camera images.

GIC was one of 19 exhibitors who created a virtual booth for conference participants to interact with. Similar to a physical booth, conference participants had the opportunity to “stop-by” and engage GIC staff on the center’s ongoing plastic research.

One benefit of the online platform is the capability to provide multiple media formats to participants. GIC’s booth featured videos clips and digital copies of research posters highlighting the center’s research projects. Related projects of interest featured I the booth include a GIS analysis to create Marine plastic density map of the Mekong River Basin, as well as custom smart device applications for citizen science-based plastic data collection.

The theme for Sea of Solutions 2020 was “Wasting less plastic and keeping it out of the ocean – Has the needle moved?”.

The United Nations Environment Program and the Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia created Sea of Solutions to seek out solutions to the ever-increasing plastic problem facing our oceans and waterways. A conference is held annually to ignite collaboration and idea exchange between stakeholders with the goal of reducing plastic waste in waterbodies. GIC participated in the first annual conference in 2019 which was held at UN-ESCAP, Bangkok, Thailand. For more information on Sea of Solutions please visit this link.

For a playlist of GIC’s videos featured at our Sea of Solutions virtual booth click here.