The Global Plastics Alliance (GPA), a collaboration among plastics industry associations and allied industry associations around the world, released the 4th Progress Report, summarizing the status of commitments made under The Declaration of the Global Plastics Associations for Solutions on Marine Litter, also known as the "Global Declaration.”
As of December 2017, approximately 355 projects have been planned, underway, or completed. This represents an increase of more than three and a half times the number of projects since 2011 when the Global Declaration was announced. The projects vary widely, from beach clean-ups to expanding waste management capacities, and from global research to awareness and education campaigns. These projects have been undertaken by 74 associations in 40 countries from virtually every corner of the globe.
“Our industry associations are actively engaged in solutions to address marine debris,” said Callum Chen, Secretary-General, Asia Plastics Forum. “Particularly in Asia, the plastics value chain is making strides to educate consumers and governments on the ways to keep plastic out of our environment. There is a pressing need for improving waste management infrastructure as a solution to this global challenge.”
“This latest report shows the progress made by the global plastics industry to help provide solutions to the ocean plastic problem, in every region of the world,” said Steve Russell, Vice President of Plastics, American Chemistry Council. “Since the 5th International Marine Debris Conference when we first announced the Declaration, we’ve more than tripled the number of projects.”
Thursday March 15th, Russell will participate in the panel Global Plastics Alliance Efforts to Address Marine Debris, which will discuss work underway as part of the declaration, including many of the newly reported projects. Other speakers will include Crispian Lao, Philippines Plastics Industry Association; Douw Steyn, Plastics South Africa; Karl-H. Foerster, PlasticsEurope; Steve Sikra, Procter and Gamble; and Alexander Turra, University of Sao Paulo.
“An important pillar of Plastics 2030 (PlasticsEurope’s Voluntary Commitment), is to end the leakage of plastics in the environment, said Karl-H. Foerster, Executive Director, PlasticsEurope. “We need to focus on long-term sustainable solutions to tackle marine litter. For this to happen, it is essential that the collaboration of all stakeholders continues by developing and implementing programs that address the problem at source”, Mr Foerster concluded.
The six focus areas of the Global Declaration are education, research, public policy, sharing best practices, plastics recycling/recovery, and plastic pellet containment.