SWANApalooza Q&A with Keynote Speakers

With three weeks to go until SWANApalooza, we caught up with two of our keynote speakers who will discuss the future of marine litter education, research and funding for new ways to tackle plastic waste – Chris Cui, Director of China Programs, Closed Loop Fund, and Mike Witt, Corporate Director of Plastics Circular Economy, The Dow Chemical Company.


SWANApalooza 2019 Keynote:
"Marine Litter—The Last Straw?"
February 26, 11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m.
What are the economic impacts of marine litter?
Witt - First of all, waste does not belong in the environment, and that’s the bottom line. Waste in the environment has negative environmental, social, economic, public health and safety impacts. 
Marine litter can certainly affect a number of key industries, including those that rely on a clean marine environment, such as the tourism industry, agriculture, aquaculture, fisheries, energy, shipping, and many others. Management of marine litter that has washed ashore can burden local communities whose economies could depend on a clean and robust marine environment.
What improvements have you seen in the last few years and how could we build on them?
Cui - Partnership between public and private sector, between developing and developed countries is crucial to prevention of marine litter, as well as the whole waste management, broader environmental and human health problems globally.
What do you hope to see change in the coming years and how can people at home make a difference?
Witt - 1) Commit and teach children how to recycle so that they see waste as something that can be valuable in the future. 2) Work with their local recycler to better understand and advocate for the community’s unique opportunities to recycle discarded plastic. 3) Development of rules and regulations that promote broad recycling of plastic waste, especially at local level.
What insights do you hope SWANApalooza attendees will take away from your keynote?
Cui - The ban of imported recycles in Asian countries have created a fundamental market shift for recycling industry that will have a long-term impact for the industry in the U.S. and China.
Turbulence creates opportunities for those who are prepared. Seize business opportunity out of the changes by taking a collaborative approach with partners in the U.S. and abroad, equipping yourself with latest developments on innovation & global investment opportunities, policies and willing to invest to get a head start for the new age of recycling.
Hear from more speakers like Chris Cui and Michael Witt at SWANApalooza in Boston from February 25-28!