We have endless opportunities to demonstrate leadership, thanks to plastic:
World leaders agree to draw up ‘historic’ treaty on plastic waste
UN environment assembly resolution is being hailed as biggest climate deal since 2015 Paris accord
World leaders, environment ministers and other representatives from 173 countries have agreed to develop a legally binding treaty on plastics, in what many described a truly historic moment.
The resolution, agreed at the UN environment assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, calls for a treaty covering the “full lifecycle” of plastics from production to disposal, to be negotiated over the next two years. It has been described by the head of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) as the most important multilateral environmental deal since the Paris climate accord in 2015.
Approximately 7bn of the estimated 9.2bn tonnes of plastics produced between 1950 and 2017 are now waste. About 75% of that waste is either deposited in landfills or accumulating in terrestrial and aquatic environments and ecosystems.
“Against the backdrop of geopolitical turmoil, the UN environment assembly shows multilateral cooperation at its best,” said Espen Barth Eide, the president of UNEA-5 and Norway’s minister for climate and the environment. “Plastic pollution has grown into an epidemic. With today’s resolution we are officially on track for a cure.”
Inger Andersen, the director of the UN Environment Programme, tweeted: “We have just gavelled the resolution paving the way for global action to #BeatPlasticPollution. The most important environmental deal since the Paris accord.”
“The work starts now!” she added…
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