The OceanWise Storymap

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Plastic foam products made of expanded polystyrene (EPS) and extruded polystyrene (XPS)
are amongst the top 10 items of marine litter found on European beach litter surveys.

We are OceanWise, a project looking for solutions to reduce this type of marine litter.
We want to keep EPS and XPS away from the marine environment.

Seventeen findings on EPS

Did you know there are millions of EPS fragments lost to the environment that never get captured? Just imagine the impact this has in the marine environment: where do these fragments go?

How can design help

Teresa Franqueira is a professor and researcher at the Department of Communication and Art at the University of Aveiro, Portugal, and was elected, in past December, the international coordinator of the network for social innovation and sustainability of the DESIS (Design for Social Innovation and Sustainability).

Who's changing the world

EPS is a problem for the marine wildlife and ecosystems as it is commonly found in the sea and coastal areas. EPS is mostly used to produce packaging and in the construction sector. Althouh it is a recyclable material, this does not happen in most industries and countries.

MeetingS wITH stakeholders

NEW Reports | Summary


"What we found"

“We have been working on a Knowledge Hub where you can find information about the impact of EPS and XPS on marine litter, how can circular economy help to fix this problem and what material alternatives can we have for these”

Linkages between the OceanWise Project and the European Green Deal

OW Database of EPS Applications Users Stakeholders

OW Report on EPS and XPS Recycling

Report – Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) and Extruded Polystyrene (XPS) as Food Contact Materials and Life Cycle Analyses

Bioplastics Workshop

In recent times a new generation of biodegradable (compostable) plastics has been added to the traditional ranges of petroleum-derived plastics, representing an advance and an alternative in the sustainability of these materials. However, the current systems for the collection, management and segregation of their waste have not been adapted to the use of biodegradable plastics on the market.

This Workshop focused on this problem and aimed to capture and identify feasible ideas that provide concrete solutions. 


Reports | Summary

OceanWise, building a circular economy around foamed polystyrene

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OceanWise is a European project with 13 partners from five countries – Portugal, Spain, France, Ireland, and the United Kingdom.  The 13 partners range from national governmental organizations and operational agencies to knowledge centres from the 5 countries. In addition, the OSPAR Secretariat has joined the partnership as associated partner, adding institutional support and advice to the project, as the OSPAR Convention includes all the countries of the North-East Atlantic area.