Hundreds of organizations pledge to eliminate plastic waste


More than $200m has been pledged by five venture capital funds to create a circular economy for plastic. Home to SC Johnson operations for decades, Indonesia has vow up to $ one billion annually to decrease the amount of plastic and other pollution in its waters and endeavours a 70 percent drop in marine waste by 2025.

And while packaging, such as bottles, yoghurt pots and wrappers, is not the sole source of plastic pollution, it represents the biggest use of plastic.

L'Oréal, Johnson & Johnson and Unilever are three of the beauty giants to have signed the commitment, while big-name signatories from the fashion world include H&M, Burberry and Stella McCartney. "We need to move upstream to the source of the flow", Founder of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Dame Ellen MacArthur, said. We want to act and lead by example.

Nestlé chief executive Mark Schneider said the Commitment was the "step-change" urgently needed to move from a linear to a circular economy. To complement the efforts of individual member companies, the CGF will identify specific areas where we can work collaboratively and pre-competitively to advance a circular economy for plastic packaging.

"We are on the edge of a plastic precipice".

Faber added that several CGF members have already been taking steps to reduce problematic or unnecessary packaging and increase the use of packaging that is recyclable or reusable.

"Plastic waste is one of the greatest environmental challenges facing the world", said United Kingdom environment secretary Michael Gove.

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At present, an estimated 12.7 million tons of plastic - from plastic bottles and bags to microbeads - end up in the world's oceans each year, which are the equivalent of one dump truck load every minute.

The foundation calculated that how much of this plastic waste is sent to landfill as well as how much vanishes into the environment. SC Johnson will continue its effort to make curbside recycling of flexible plastic film such as Ziploc® brand bags a reality in the U.S. SC Johnson is also promoting reuse of Ziploc® brand bags, which are made to be reused many times.

Does it go far enough?

Pavan Sukhdev, President of WWF International, echoed the need for cross-sector collaboration to tackle plastic pollution.

Nevertheless, some are concerned that the pledge is not ambitious enough. That's why the UK Government has brought together the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance and Global Plastics Action Partnership. "The sheer number and size of the companies behind this pledge shows the industry is responding to people's concerns about the impacts of plastic waste".

The aim is to combat plastic waste pollution, which is harming the seas.

Earlier this year Earthwise backed the New Zealand Plastic Packaging Declaration, making a commitment to ensure its packaging is 100% recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025.