Tagged on: plastics

Foresight Briefs
Marine Plastics Litter and Microplastics - Foresight Brief No. 002 - September 2017
United Nations Environment Programme

The global production of plastics has increased from 1.5 million tons in 1950s to about 300 million tons currently, at an average rate of 4 per cent per annum and is expected to continue growing (Boucher and Friot 2017). About 50 per cent of the plastics produced is for single use, and the literature estimates that 8 million tons (2.5 per cent) of the plastic produced are leaked into the oceans annually (PlasticsEurope 2016).


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2017
Reports and Books
Marine Plastic Debris and Microplastics: Global Lessons and Research to Inspire Action and Guide Policy Change
United Nations Environment Programme

Plastic litter in the ocean can be considered a ‘common concern of humankind’. This study summarizes the state of our knowledge on sources, fate and effect of marine plastics debris and microplastics, and describes approaches and potential solutions to address this multifaceted issue. The study is divided into four main sections: Background, Evidence Base, Taking Action, and Conclusions and Key Research Needs.


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2016
Reports and Books
Marine litter legislation: A toolkit for policymakers
United Nations Environment Programme; Environmental Law Institute

Far too much of the 300 million tonnes of plastic produced every year finds its way into our oceans, food chains and ecosystems, damaging our health in the process. Well-designed laws can help reverse this global trend. This report provides an overview of legislation that countries have implemented to tackle marine litter, focusing in particular on upstream solutions.


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2016
Reports and Books
Global Waste Management Outlook
United Nations Environment Programme, International Waste Management Association

The Global Waste Management Outlook, a collective effort of the United Nations Environment Programme and the International Waste Management Association, is a pioneering scientific global assessment on the state of waste management and a call for action to the international community. Prepared as a follow up to the Rio+20 Summit and as a response to UNEP Governing Council decision GC 27/12, the document establishes the rationale and the tools for taking a holistic approach towards waste management and recognizing waste and resource management as a significant contributor to sustainable development and climate change mitigation. The Outlook is primarily focused on the ‘governance’ issues which need to be addressed to establish a sustainable solution – including the regulatory and other policy instruments, the partnerships and the financing models. Broad in scope and global in coverage, the Outlook includes a series of Topic Sheets and case studies addressing specific issues and illustrating featured initiatives. This document provides an inspiring possible way forward on waste management, drawing conclusions and making recommendations to assist policy makers and practitioners to develop local solutions for waste management. To complement the Sustainable Development Goals of the Post-2015 Development Agenda, the Outlook sets forth Global Waste Management Goals and a Global Call to Action to achieve those goals.


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2015
Reports and Books
Biodegradable Plastics and Marine Litter: Misconceptions, concerns and impacts on marine environments
United Nations Environment Programme

This briefing paper provides a concise summary of some of the key issues surrounding the biodegradability of plastics in the oceans. It explores whether the adoption of biodegradable plastics will reduce the impact of marine plastics overall. The paper also addresses the lack of public knowledge about biodegradable plastics. Moreover, it the raises concern over the labeling of products as “biodegradable” as it may result in more littering behaviors due to a perceived technical fix that removes responsibility from individuals


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2015
Newsletters
Africa Office Newsletter - May-June 2018
United Nations Environment Programme
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Our Planet
Towards a Pollution-free Planet - Our Planet December 2017
United Nations Environment Programme

In this issue of Our Planet, policymakers, experts and business leaders examine the growing threat of pollution, its enormous impacts on people and the environment, and the innovative solutions that can help us move towards a pollution-free planet.


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Other
Draft Call for Action on Plastic Microbeads
United Nations Environment Programme
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Factsheets
Single-Use Plastics: A Roadmap for Sustainability - Fact-sheet for Policymakers
United Nations Environment Programme

The benefits of plastic are undeniable. The material is cheap, lightweight and easy to make. These qualities have led to a boom in the production of plastic over the past century. This trend will continue as global plastic production skyrockets over the next 10 to 15 years. We are already unable to cope with the amount of plastic waste we generate, unless we rethink the way we manufacture, use and manage plastics. Ultimately, tackling one of the biggest environmental scourges of our time will require governments to regulate, businesses to innovate and individuals to act. This paper sets out the latest thinking on how we can achieve this. It looks at what governments, businesses and individuals have achieved at national and sub-national levels to curb the consumption of single-use plastics. It offers lessons that may be useful for policymakers who are considering regulating the production and use of single-use plastics.


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Reports and Books
The State of Plastics: World Environment Day Outlook 2018
United Nations Environment Programme

The benefits of plastic are undeniable. The material is cheap, lightweight and easy to make. These qualities have led to a boom in the production of plastic over the past century. This trend will continue as global plastic production skyrockets over the next 10 to 15 years. We are already unable to cope with the amount of plastic waste we generate. Only a tiny fraction is recycled. About 13 million tonnes of plastic leak into our oceans every year, harming biodiversity, economies and, potentially, our own health.

The world urgently needs to rethink the way we manufacture, use and manage plastic. This paper sets out the latest thinking on how we can achieve this. It looks at what governments, businesses and individuals can do to check the runaway production and consumption of plastic.


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