In February 2022, national governments and multinationals will gather for the next session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA 5.2), presenting the international community with a unique opportunity to take substantial decisions on plastic pollution. Ahead of the meeting, more than 70 signatories including multinationals signed onto a statement.
In response, Greenpeace USA Oceans Director’s John Hocevar said:
“We need a treaty that will quickly move us away from unnecessary plastic packaging and support the development of refill and reuse systems on a global scale. Anything less will be a missed opportunity. In the meantime, there is no reason for big brands, big oil, and policymakers to wait for a treaty to make the right decisions — our climate depends on swift action.
While it’s encouraging to see the global treaty talk finally happening, it’s important to highlight that lobbyists representing petrochemical companies like Dow and ExxonMobil have worked hard for years to prevent a global plastic treaty, claiming that it was unnecessary, and bad for business. Their short-sighted opposition played a major role in delaying the whole process by two years, allowing plastic pollution to worsen dramatically in the meantime.
That is why it is important for corporations, including many of the world’s largest plastic polluters like Coke and Nestle, to publicly call for an ambitious global treaty that will cover the whole life cycle of plastics. It is critical that this treaty focuses on reducing the use of plastic, otherwise the impacts of plastic on climate, environmental justice, and human health will not be solved.”
Greenpeace Africa’s mobilisation Officer Erastus Ooko has said:“This treaty is an opportunity for Africa’s leadership to truly demonstrate the commitments they have made to addressing plastic pollution on the continent, and to show that they are truly on the side of the people. Cooperation across Africa is needed in forging a strong fight for a plastic-free future.”
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