Litter free Rivers and Streams (LIVES)

Litter free Rivers and Streams (LIVES)

The project Litter free Rivers and Streams (LIVES) is a cross-border initiative for the reduction of plastic waste in the catchment area of the Meuse.

LIVES supports environmentally friendly cross-border cooperation by bringing together ten project partners throughout the Meuse-Rhine European region with the aim of reducing plastic pollution by 50% on completion of the project.

The amount of plastic waste in the river Meuse is getting to the stage where it could almost be called a ‘plastic soup'. At the moment European Union member states are busy reducing plastic in rivers - and that includes the Meuse, of course - on an individual basis. However, the catchment area of rivers like the Meuse falls outside the borders of a single country. So the LIVES project focuses on the creation of a harmonised, joint strategy to tackle pollution by plastic in the Meuse.

Plastic pollution in river Meuse

Plastic pollution in the Meuse is a problem that deserves attention. Plastic waste, sometimes hardly visible to the naked eye, is a danger to public health, biodiversity, nature and shipping. States are currently taking steps independently of each other, while in many cases the catchment area is not even within their administrative borders.

Moreover, there is no EU legislation in this area. There is no common approach, but this is precisely what is needed if this problem is to be tackled effectively. This project is a stimulus for unity and solidarity, and a boost for formulating a joint policy for preventing pollution in the Meuse.

Different sections within LIVES

The project can more or less be split into 4 sections:

  • analysis of the problem
  • taking steps
  • making cross-border agreements
  • ensuring that those agreements are known throughout Europe

A wide range of regional authorities, research institutes and other interested parties from Europe are participating, with the aim of achieving a coherent policy. It will then be over to the authorities to act on the rules and regulations. Among other things, the project will lead to increased insight into waste in the Meuse and stimulate the sharing of knowledge between all those participating, the aim being to bring about a cross-border approach to the problem.

Programme period


European Programme

Interreg VA Euregio

Project website

Website Litter free rivers and streams (LIVES)