Circular Economy

Translate

Open Translation

PARIS: According to the OECD’s first Global Plastics Outlook study, despite bans and taxes on single-use plastics in more than 120 countries, the growth of recycled plastics from 6.8 million tonnes in 2000 to 29.1 million in 2019 is still only 6.0 percent of total plastics production.

Almost half of all plastic waste is generated in OECD countries, varying from an annual average of 221 kilos per person in the US and 114 kilos in Europe, to 69 kilos per person in Japan and Korea.

Later this month a UN Plastics Treaty will be discussed at the UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi. Over two million people, 100 global companies, 700-plus civil society organisations and 75 percent of UN member countries have endorsed the idea.

Some key findings from the Outlook:

• Plastic consumption has quadrupled over the past 30 years, driven by growth in emerging markets. Global plastics production doubled from 2000 to 2019 to reach 460 million tonnes. Plastics account for 3.4 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions.

• Global plastic waste generation more than doubled from 2000 to 2019 to 353 million tonnes. Nearly two-thirds of plastic waste comes from plastics with lifetimes of under five years, with 40 percent coming from packaging, 12 percent from consumer goods and 11 percent from clothing and textiles.

• Only 9.0 percent of plastic waste is recycled (15 percent is collected for recycling but 40 percent of that is disposed of as residues). Another 19 percent is incinerated, 50 percent ends up in landfill and 22 percent evades waste management systems and goes into uncontrolled dumpsites, is burned in open pits or ends up in terrestrial or aquatic environments, especially in poorer countries.

• In 2019, 6.1 million tonnes of plastic waste leaked into aquatic environments and 1.7 tonnes flowed into oceans. There is now an estimated 30 million tons of plastic waste in seas and oceans, and a further 109 million has accumulated in rivers. The build-up of plastics in rivers implies that leakage into the ocean will continue for decades to come, even if mismanaged plastic waste could be significantly reduced.

• Considering global value chains and trade in plastics, aligning design approaches and the regulation of chemicals will be key to improving the circularity of plastics. An international approach to waste management should lead to all available sources of financing, including development aid, being mobilised to help low and middle-income countries meet estimated costs of EUR 25 billion a year to improve waste management infrastructure.

To reduce plastic waste and encourage recycling or reuse, the Outlook suggests countries should make greater use of incentives including Extended Producer Responsibility schemes for packaging and durables, landfill taxes, deposit-refund and Pay-as-You-Throw systems.

The Ocean Clean Up project, with Maersk supplying the vessels and complimentary logistics, reports removing 55,020 kilos of plastic waste from the north Pacific so far – a 1/1500th of the estimated amount in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
 
Story Type: News

Vote for my Story

Our Rating: 9% - 1 votes

1000 Characters left


October 26, 2023
Circular Economy Editor

Circular economy tech company scales up with additional €40 million

LYON, FRANCE: Mecaware, a producer of strategic raw materials from end-of life-batteries and scrap metal, has secured €40 million from investors and the French government for the industrialization of its patented recycling metals process. Founded in December…
September 20, 2023
Circular Economy Editor

Airbus team develops carbon capture technology

MUNICH: An Airbus team of two engineers and a developer has been shortlisted to win the 2023 German Future Prize (Deutscher Zukunftspreis) with their Direct Air Capture (DAC) technology designed to remove CO2 from the atmosphere. The Airbus team’s entry is an…
April 29, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Consumer brands demand clarity on recycled plastics

STOCKHOLM: A report by the International Chemical Secretariat (Chemsec) from interviews with 26 global brands suggests companies want to recycle more plastic but the supply as well as information on the content, quality, functionality and price is lacking.…
April 05, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Carbon storage technology raises an additional US$850 million

ICELAND: Climeworks, the carbon capture technology company, has raised an additional US$650 million in equity to expand its Iceland-based storage facility that opened in September last year. The financing is co-led by Partners Group and Singapore’s sovereign…
March 04, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

UN members agree mandate on plastic pollution treaty

NAIROBI: The UN Environment Assembly has endorsed a resolution to end plastic pollution and pass a legally binding treaty by 2024. Plastic production rose from two million tonnes in 1950 to 348 million tonnes in 2017, becoming a global industry valued at…
January 26, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Corporate US to eliminate some plastic by 2025

ASHEVILLE, NC: The U.S. Plastics Pact, part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Plastics Pact Network, has identified 11 plastic items to be eliminated by 2025 because they are not reusable, recyclable, or compostable. The list, applying exclusively to…
January 25, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Circular economy reality built on logistics backbone says DHL

BONN: DHL has published ‘Delivering on Circularity’, a white paper explaining how the application of circular economy principles in the fashion and electronic sectors can help reduce their use of water and waste generation. According to the company around 20…
January 20, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

A circular economy will save humanity from itself

AMSTERDAM: The latest Circularity Gap report from non-profit Circular-Economy says in order to stop exploiting the Earth's finite raw materials, humanity must utilise data-driven tools to bring circularity to everyone, use metrics to track the transition and…
January 20, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Holcim partners with Bloomberg to promote circular economy construction

ZUG, Switzerland: Cement-centric producer Holcim has partnered with Bloomberg Media to develop the world’s first ‘Circular Cities Barometer’ to promote circular economy best practice around the world. According to the company the construction sector has a key…
January 18, 2022
Circular Economy Editor

Airbus to expand circular economy-based services in China

CHENGDU: Airbus, Tarmac Aerosave and the city of Chengdu are to open an aircraft lifecycle service centre in China by the end of 2023. The agreement covers aircraft parking and storage, maintenance, upgrades, conversions, dismantling and recycling services.…
December 24, 2021
Circular Economy Editor

Stellantis circular economy leads to Senegal growth

PARIS: The circular economy business of auto manufacturer Stellantis has led to the planting of 10,000 trees in Senegal since the beginning of 2021. Partnering with local NGO Oceanium and ecosystem restorer MyTree, Stellantis plants a tree supporting mangrove…
December 21, 2021
Circular Economy Editor

Ireland to introduce circular economy legislation

DUBLIN: The Irish government has announced it will introduce legislation to develop a circular economy for the country as part of a goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, Ossian Smyth TD, minister responsible for the programme at Ireland’s Department of…

We are using cookies

By continuing you are agreeing to our use of cookies

I understand