Burberry, L'Oreal, Stella McCartney, H&M and more to cut down plastics

James Marshall
November 1, 2018

Signatories collectively represent more than 20% of all plastic packaging produced globally.

250 organisations including major food and beverage companies, governments and packaging manufacturers have signed The New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, led by the United Nations and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which aims to tackle rising plastic waste levels.

Businesses will publish annual data on their progress.

"We are proud to sign the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment", said Daniel Solomita, founder & CEO, Loop Industries.

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. The urgency of the situation demands that we take responsibility: "we must have control over our usage of plastics, stop upstream unnecessary consumption of plastics, innovate for eco-design products, re-use and recycle the remaining plastics". It is a global problem requiring a global solution...

Executive Director of Packaging NZ Sharon Humphreys says she hopes this global initiative will lead to a more balanced view of packaging solutions in New Zealand, and, in the continued absence of a national plan for waste management and recycling, provide a platform for local businesses to commit to and measure sustained improvement.

Ocean plastic is a global crisis, with the equivalent of one dump truck load every minute entering the world's oceans, mainly from Asian countries.[i] At the same time, many communities affected by plastic pollution face high levels of poverty. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation released a report upon its launch, The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics, that outlined its approach. The AQUA brand also pledged to recover more plastic than it uses in Indonesia, including through interception of marine littering.

UNEP has estimated that if current pollution rates continue, there will be more plastic in the sea than fish by 2050, as 8 million tonnes of bottles and waste enter the oceans each year.

It is by coming together and using the combined power and expertise of everyone involved that we can make plastic pollution a thing of the past.

'Most efforts until now have been focused on cleaning up plastic pollution.

The Commitment and its vision have received support and endorsement from other major representative bodies, such as the WWF and The Consumer Goods Forum, a number of universities, institutions, and academics.

New Zealand revealed this week that it signed the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment declaration in an effort to work with worldwide partners to cut down on plastics and become a "circular economy". The product was the first trash bag made with 100 percent PCR plastic film that was collected through a US recycling center.

Greenpeace wants a stronger emphasis in reducing the amount of plastic put in circulation. Just because something is recyclable, it doesn't mean it will actually be recycled. Innovation is also critical, to ensure that the plastic we do need can be safely reused, recycled or composted ― circulated in the system so that it never becomes pollution.

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