Transnational R&D


Advancing towards litter-free Atlantic coastal communities by preventing and reducing macro and micro litter

Principal Investigator
Team Leader

Marisa Almeida is a senior researcher at CIIMAR with ca. 140 international publications. With a PhD in Chemistry (obtained in 2003) her main research area is phytoremediation, participating actively in studies that aim to potentiate the use of these biotechnological tools as nature-based solutions to improve and recover aquatic environments contaminated with different pollutants. Her expertise is on environmental chemistry applied to coastal and estuarine environments and on phytoremediation of contaminants in natural and constructed wetlands for environmental recovery. She also actively participates in dissemination and communication activities in the frame of CIIMAR outreach projects on water and ocean literacy.

Co-Principal Investigator
Team Leader

I’m a biologist and the leader of the Fish Ecology and Sustainability research team. My primary research area is marine ecology, specifically concerning fish communities. I’m particularly interested in understanding how human activities, including marine litter and microplastics, impact ecosystems and their ability to provide services and societal benefits. In my research, I’ve been employing innovative approaches to leverage stakeholder knowledge, as Fishers Ecological Knowledge, and provide scientific support to environmental managers and decision-makers. Throughout my career, I’ve bridged the gap between science and society, advocating for stakeholder integration in science, fostering collaborative solutions for environmental issues, and promoting Ocean Literacy.


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Free-LitterAT will achieve litter-free coastal communities by combining knowledge, tools and technology with pilot actions with multi-stakeholder engagement.

It tackles marine litter, a transnational challenge demanding an integral approach involving prevention, monitoring and removal when feasible of the already accumulated marine litter. The overall objective is to protect biodiversity by implementing innovative approaches to prevent and reduce marine litter, with special emphasis on ALDFG and microplastics.

Free LitterAt will contribute to reducing inputs, locate sources and hotspots, enhance monitoring capabilities and raise awareness. Main outputs include guidance, tools and joint solutions for waste management, marine litter monitoring, modelling, clean-up and removal as well as action plans transferred to the competent authorities and maritime stakeholders.

The project will build on previous results and alliances, developing new solutions to be implemented through pilot actions.

Leader Institution
CETMAR - Centro Tecnológico del Mar
Interreg Atlantic Area
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