On Friday, 25th of September 2020, the Blue World Institute organized a workshop in Mali Lošinj entitled ‘Open Day for divers and fishermen’. The main reason for this event was the presentation of a prototype device for marine litter recycling and conversion into biofuel for marine engines, created as a result of the marGnet project, co-financed by the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund through a Sustainable Blue Economy call. The Blue World Institute participated in this project with four other partner organizations from Italy, one of which is the company Sintol from Turin, whose engineers developed the prototype and thus completed the process of marine litter recycling. One of the project activities is also development of methods for detecting sunken waste and abandoned and lost fishing tools on the bottom using a multi-beam acoustic device. Therefore, fellow scientists from partner organization Laguna Project from Venice are currently staying at the island of Lošinj to test this method in our seabed. It was also an opportunity for dr.sc. Federico Riccato to give a lecture on sustainable practices and protocol for removing waste from the seabed, to the gathered divers. Other activities of the project are implementing a modelling tool able to simulate the dispersion of ML on a seabed, collecting waste from the seabed, raising public awareness of this problem with an emphasis on promoting sustainable practices during fishing activities. As it was not possible to bring the prototype from Italy to Croatia due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was presented to the workshop participants via video material and infographics.

Also, this was an opportunity to present to the divers and fishermen the activities of the ECOSS project, as well as the current results of the LIFE Euroturtles project, given that many of those gathered were involved in certain project activities related to monitoring and protection of sea turtles. Also, the LIFE Delfi project was presented, the implementation of which began during this year. Within the project activities it is planned to cooperate with local fishermen on the development of measures to reduce the negative interaction of dolphins with fishing gear.