The symposium is further sponsored by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES), North Pacific Marine Science Association (PICES), the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the OSPAR Commission, the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC), the Marine and Freshwater Research Institute of Iceland, the Harvard Kennedy School and the International Arctic Science Committee.

The symposium was originally scheduled to take place in Reykjavík, Iceland, in-person in April 2020. However, due to the coronavirus pandemic, it has now been moved online and will be held in a virtual format. Iceland holds the Chairmanship of the Arctic Council from May 2019 to May 2021 and has during this period promoted discussion on ways and means that may reduce the impact of plastics in the Arctic Marine Environment.

The International Symposium will focus on scientific knowledge of the problem and the best practices to deal with the huge challenge. In this way, the symposium is expected to build a foundation of science and deliver information and advice for decision-makers. Presentations except for the opening and closing sessions will be pre-recorded and available for participants to view at least 10 days before each session starts. Presenters or co-authors will participate in panel discussions on the content of their presentations. Poster sessions will also be prerecorded.

Registration Fee

The registration is now open and the registration fee is 17.500kr ISK and 10.000kr ISK for students.

The Organization Committee will provide a refund up to the currently reduced registration fee to those of you that have already registered and paid the full amount and plan to attend the online event. Furthermore, organizers offer a refund of 90% of the registration fee to those that have already registered but cannot attend the online event. In such instances, please e-mail the Organization Committee at

A link to connect will be sent to all registered participants in due time.

The 1st draft of the agenda is available here.

For more information about the Symposium, please consult the official website