A British charity has launched an appeal for members of the public to join its drone-based initiative to identify the quantity of plastic plaguing beaches across the UK.
The Plastic Tide, which deploys drones to survey coastal regions, is running a campaign for the duration of nationwide 10-day Festival of Science.
Over the course of the initiative, which kicked off on Friday March 9 and is running until March 18, the charity is urging members of the public to sign up to help tag debris in images obtained by the drones.
The organisation, which is working in partnership with researchers from the British Science Association, has set the target of tagging 250,000 items over the course of the event.
With the aid of citizen scientists tagging images, the organisation hopes to develop an algorithm to detect plastic on the coast.
Dr. Erik Van Sebille, world expert on marine litter and Science Adviser to the Plastic Tide, said: “The Plastic Tide will significantly enhance our understanding of the amount of plastic on coastlines, by trailing revolutionary drone-based automatic detection of the litter. This will aid the creation of a global inventory of marine plastic pollution, and help identify hotspots, impacts and fate of our plastic.”