This module introduces the processes for dealing with growing environmental problems of plastic wastes covering utilization/reduction and encouraging developing countries to further implement the methods or available options suggested. The topics cover all aspects of plastics waste processing and disposal, including technical and non-technical considerations, to establish a comprehensive platform for plastic waste management. It provides explanations for newcomers to the subjects as well as contemporary details for the experienced users in plastic waste management.

▸Course objectives:

The objective of this course is to implement innovative concept and practice in the management of plastic wastes covering the perspectives of policy-making, management, and technologies, etc. Innovation is the key solution to address the challenges and bring plastic management towards sustainability. Innovations in plastic waste management not only limited to technology, but also overlook the policy-making and management systems. This course aims to enhance the students’ understanding on principles and methodologies of innovation, to identify the potentials of innovations in plastic waste management, and to introduce various innovative practices that are undertaken in plastic management.

▸Expected outcomes:
▹Explain the basic principles and methodologies for innovation;
▹Analyze innovation needs in plastic waste management using systematic approaches;
▹Identify the innovative practices and technologies driving the modern sustainable plastic waste management;
▹Incorporate the innovative theory and practice in plastic waste management.

Packaging and consumer products are the most encountered product categories in rivers, while fishery items dominated in the oceanic environment. There is growing concern about the use of plastics and their effects on the environment and human health. This module sets out how plastics are made, used and disposed of. As the ecological interactions of plastic litters will drive their environmental impacts, this module also covers how plastics enter the environment and the risks plastics pose to wildlives, humans and aquatic communities.

This module presents the specific marine ecological concepts, recognizing the importance, complexity and fragile aspects of different types of marine habitats. Topics include the trophic interactions, flows of energy between land, air and the marine environment, and human impact on marine ecosystems. This module provides details of types and sources of emerging pollutants, their transportation and dispersion in water, sediment and marine organisms. The course contains practicing of sampling techniques, species identification of plankton, invertebrates, macroalgae and fish. 

The main objective of this module is to explore the concept for sustainable recycling programs and technologies for non-recyclable plastics waste management. Deprivation of plastics quality and factors influencing quality of plastics recycling to be polymer cross-contamination, presence of additives, non-polymer impurities, and polymer degradation are discussed. 

The objective of this module is to describe the product (byproduct) development opportunities from waste materials and discusses the main processes and pathways of the conversion of polymeric materials to energy, fuel and other valuable products. This module presents a comprehensive description of important trends in the science and technology of plastic waste recovery such as the thermochemical treatment of plastics, incineration and thermal unit design, and the production of plastic waste to materials. 

The course is designed to prepare environmental engineers and scientists for analytical work in basic and applied research and problem solving in a wide range of marine plastic waste management. It provides the fundamental and practical understanding of different identifications and types of marine plastic wastes, as well as analytical methods to understand the compositions and characteristics from sources to final disposal in the marine environment to minimize social, environmental and economic impacts.