2022 Virginia Marine Debris Summit

September 27 & 28, 2022
Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center

To learn about Actions that can be taken to reduce litter and marine debris, visit the 2021-2025 Virginia Marine Debris Reduction Plan.

The 2022 Virginia Marine Debris Summit was held in person at the Virginia Aquarium in Virginia Beach on September 27 and 28, 2022.

Speaker presentations: see below.

Download the Summit Agenda.


The Summit was hosted and co-sponsored by:

FOCUS: Since the majority of marine debris (about 80%) comes from inland sources, the entire summit focused on preventing consumer debris (bottles, food wrappers, cigarette butts, bags, balloons and the other common and harmful sources of litter & debris).

SUPPORTERS: Funding to support the Summit was from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Office of Coastal Management and the Freeman Family Fund.

We are proud that the Virginia Marine Debris Summit was certified by Virginia Green as a Certified Green Event!

Monday September 26, 2022
Tackling Plastic Pollution: An evening with plastic pollution experts
Speakers: Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center, Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program, Clean Virginia Waterways, Lynnhaven River NOW.

Tuesday September 27, 2022

2021-25 Virginia Marine Debris Reduction Plan: Accomplishments to Date
Laura McKay, Virginia Coastal Zone Management Program and
Katie Register, Clean Virginia Waterways of Longwood University

Consumer Debris Strategies: Prevention, Behavior Change, Education, Outreach
                        Moderator: Zach Huntington, Clean Virginia Waterways

Research: Broadening Our Understanding of Marine Debris from Consumer Items
Moderator: Donna Bilkovic, Virginia Institute of Marine Science

Funding Sources for Marine Debris & Litter Prevention

Wednesday September 28, 2022

Plastic Pollution & Public Policy
Moderator: Jeff Flood, Virginia CZM Program

What do Virginians Want? Survey of Virginia Voters: Findings from the 2022 CZM & CVW statewide survey. Steve Raabe, OpinionWorks

Policy, Management and Legislation
            Update on Current Virginia Laws. Moderator: Karen Forget, Lynnhaven River Now and Virginia Conservation Network

Potential Legislation to Address Litter & Marine Debris

Pulling it all Together: Breakout Groups to Discuss Legislative & Policy Solutions


Proper Disposal, Interception, and Infrastructure
                        Moderator: Mark Swingle, VA Aquarium Foundation

Unique Partnerships for Litter Removal
Emily Burton, Fairfax County’s Operation Stream Shield

The Big Picture: Local Waste Management Challenges
Debbie Spiliotopoulos, Solid Waste Program Planner, Northern Virginia Regional Commission

Overcoming Recycling Challenges: What is Happening to Curbside Recycling?
  Kathy Russell, TFC Recycling