The aim of ESR7’s work is to analyse the status quo of the legal framework regarding MP in Europe’s freshwater ecosystems. Existing rules in international and European law will be examined for their contents, potential regulatory gaps and their legal force. Subsequently, future instruments will be developed and checked for legal feasibility. 1) ESR7 will examine international treaties and programmes as international law contains only few provisions addressing land-based pollution, often do not target MP or have no binding legal force. 2) Regional international law addresses water pollution by conventions on International Commissions for the protection of rivers or lakes and by regional marine conventions. ESR7 will review to what extent regional conventions can be used to combat MP. 3) In European law, the relevant legal bases will be analysed along the life and dispersion cycle of plastic products. 4) ESR7 will provide a legal framework assessing the regulatory gaps and opportunities.

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