VP Shared Services, Eli Vassenden, spoke on behalf of Grieg Star during an IEAE round-table conference last Thursday – as one of the very few representatives from the private sector.
Throughout the last months, parts of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have focused on ocean plastic pollution. In August, they presented the NUclear TEChnology for Controlling Plastic Pollution (NUTEC Plastics) programme. And Thursday, Eli Vassenden spoke during their round-table conference highlighting the issue.
“It does feel exhilarating to speak at an occasion like an IAEA conference. Being one of just a few participants from the private sector made it even more so. We are the ones operating out there, the ones with hands-on experience. It was nice to be allowed to talk about how we handle plastic waste as a shipping company,” VP Shared Services, Eli Vassenden in Grieg Star says.
During the launch of the NUTEC Plastic in August, Najat Mokhtar, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Sciences and Applications said: “Actions against plastic pollution at whatever level will only work if the full range of available technological solutions is used – including nuclear technologies that complement conventional approaches.”
“The challenge is simply too big to miss out on innovative technologies that could add real value to ongoing efforts and initiatives. This is precisely why the IAEA has developed NUTEC Plastics. Nuclear technologies and techniques offer advantages that are not always well known, but they can be an accelerator and enhancer of results,” he continued.
The round-table conference in Vienna last Thursday was one of four regional meetings attended by government representatives, researchers, NGOs, and IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi. Eli joined digitally and spoke on how Grieg Star has reduced plastic waste and ensured proper handling of the left-over waste.
“The IAEA contacted the Norwegian embassy in Vienna to get participants for the conference, given Norway’s efforts in preserving the oceans. The fact that the embassy asked us to represent Norway is a testament to the Grieg Group’s attention to this issue,” Eli says.
After the conference, the Norwegian Ambassador to Austria, Kjersti Andersen, wrote: “I am grateful for the Grieg Star participation in this. Your presentation was exciting, and the message on ‘Restore the Ocean’ was clear. The combination of pointing to concrete results in reducing the use of plastic, with clearly formulated goals for the future, made your address stand out in a very positive way.”