Minimising externalities of plastics requires bold rethinking of social and industrial consumption. End-of-pipe plastics recycling, while necessary, is grossly insufficient and imperfect. Lawmakers and businesses must create mechanisms that reduce the production and consumption of petroleum-based plastics. The shift won't happen at the necessary pace unless ...

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Minimising externalities of plastics requires bold rethinking of social and industrial consumption. End-of-pipe plastics recycling, while necessary, is grossly insufficient and imperfect. Lawmakers and businesses must create mechanisms that reduce the production and consumption of petroleum-based plastics. The shift won't happen at the necessary pace unless the externalities are internalised, with those causing the externalities paying the true cost. Only then will the alternatives become financially attractive.

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Objectives

Reduce and replace unnecessary plastic with alternative materials, in the long term.

Eliminate the unnecessary use of plastic.

Circulate plastic through the economy.

Outcomes

Commitment by business and government to act on Un-plastic.

Proliferation and cross-fertilization of ideas and practices on Un-plastic.

Substantial contributions to Un-plastic business value chains.

Enhancing Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) amongst businesses.

Target groups

Investers, for the vision to channel investment into research aiming at better design and material substitution.

Businesses

Government (national, sub-national, local)

Other active partners (e.g. NGOs, associations, academics), working to develop alternative materials and innovative technologies that simplify recovering and recycling plastics and better designed products.

Downloads

Impact Stories

United Nations - Plastic - both a wonderful invention and a scourge on our planet. Over 300 million tons will be produced this year. Most is never recycled and remains on our land and in our seas for ever. Our story shows the damage to all creatures who depend on the ocean for their food – from birds… to us.
What really happens to the plastic you throw away - Emma Bryce
The way forward

Transformative change through systems thinking is the only long-term solution. A systems approach would address various externalities of plastics production, use and disposal. Such a system would leverage the benefits of plastics without putting ecological and social health at risk