The India-Norway cooperation project on capacity building for reducing plastic and chemical pollution in India (INOPOL)

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Background and main goals 

The India-Norway cooperation project on capacity building for reducing plastic and chemical pollution in India (INOPOL) was established under the joint Marine Pollution Initiative in 2019.  

The INOPOL project (2019-2022) aims to address the highly interlinked challenges regarding marine litter, microplastics and Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in India. It will investigate the land sources, river fluxes and ocean input of plastic and POPs pollution and develop knowledge-based reduction measures to reduce the releases and impacts of plastic pollution and POPs.

The project aims support India’s ambitious targets to reduce plastic releases and to implement the Stockholm Convention on POPs by (1) providing science-based knowledge and (2) strengthening the local and regional capacity to prevent and mitigate the environmental threat posed by plastic and chemical pollution. The knowledge produced under the INOPOL project will form a pilot which later may be used to scale up efforts at national level.

Overview of the INOPOL project’s goal hierarchy:

Reduced marine litter and microplastics

Reduced use and impact of 
persistent organic pollutants (POPs)

a. Baseline for land-based sources of marine litter and microplastics established 
b. Monitoring capacity strengthened 
c. Societal drivers assessed, and awareness enhanced  
d. Tools for management of marine litter and microplastics developed
e. Socioeconomic and societal impacts of measures assessed   
f. Plastic Waste Management Strategy Report: Gujarat   
a. Baseline for use and release established, incl. links to plastic pollution   
b. Monitoring capacity strengthened   
c. Tools for management of POPs established 
d. Enhanced policy and management addressing social and economic impacts and best practices  
e. Capacity building and training carried out and awareness raised  
f. Action plan for 7 “new” POPs in Gujarat
Plastics, POPs, Interlinkages Figure paint


Project Location 

INOPOL focus on the maritime and industrial state of Gujarat, where rapid industrialisation and urbanisation have contributed to making Gujarat state one of the most polluted states in India.
Field locations in Gujarat are the catchment areas of rivers Tapi (Tapti) and Daman Ganga, in the cities of Surat and Vapi. These locations are impacted by and host to a range of petrochemical industries, refineries, thermal power plants, cement and rayon factories, and are receiver and transport route for land-based plastic and chemical waste to the Arabian Sea. 

Surat, the second largest city in Gujarat, is projected to be the fastest growing city globally between 2019 and 2035, and is major commercial, industrial and trade hub located along the Tapi river. Vapi is considered one of the longest chemical industrial corridors in Asia, being home to numerous small-scale chemical industries situated near the riverbanks of the Daman Ganga River. 

Map of Surat and Vapi catchment areas 

Map India


Last updated 12.02.2021