International Law on Plastic Pollution

We have developed what is called a «thought starter» on the elements and design of a convention to launch the political debate. The question of whether formal negotiations should be opened will be on the table of UNEA-5. You can read our Thought Starter and watch an online presentation for the Ad Hoc Open Expert Group on Marine Litter and Microplastics. In recent years, however, international attention has focused on global plastic pollution. The 2012 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development identified plastic as part of marine pollution that negatively affects the oceans. Footnote 3 Since then, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has become an important forum for activity. In 2014, the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) adopted a resolution on marine plastics and microplastics. This led UNEA to focus on marine litter through plastics, including a 2018 comprehensive study entitled «Combating Marine Plastic Litter and Microplastics», footnote 4, which assessed the effectiveness of international, regional and subregional approaches and strategies to address marine plastic pollution. Unep`s current work focuses on the Ad Hoc Open Group of Experts on Marine Litter and Microplastics, footnote 5, which was established to examine barriers and options for addressing marine plastic litter and microplastics from all sources, in particular land-based sources. A contract could also fill gaps in applicable law. For example, there are no arrangements to clean plastics that are already in the ocean.

A new contract could provide for a sanitation fund to fight against these «old» plastics. Vermaire, J.C., Pomeroy, C., Herczegh, S.M., Haggart, O., and Murphy, M. (2017). Abundance and distribution of microplastics in the open water and sediment of the Ottawa River in Canada and its tributaries. Facets 2, 301–314. doi: 10.1139/facets-2016-0070 Microplastics in the Marine Environment: Sources, Distribution, Biological Effects and Socio-Economic Impacts Show all 24 articles Adam, I., Walker, T. R., Bezerra, J.C., and Clayton, A. (2020). Measures to reduce marine pollution from single-use plastic in West Africa. Mar. Policy 116:103928.

doi: 10.1016/j.marpol.2020.103928 The essays at this symposium enter into a dialogue on global plastic pollution and propose solutions to these regulatory challenges. They have created the conditions for a more comprehensive and systematic treatment of this critical global problem of the terrestrial and marine environments by others. There are a number of international conventions relating to the control of various aspects of marine plastic pollution, including the Stockholm and Basel Conventions and MARPOL, as well as various regional maritime conventions. There is also a variety of national and regional legislation (e.B. at EU level) in different countries. The overall goal of the initial discussions was to set a specific date to prevent plastic from entering the oceans. The rest of the agenda focuses on four themes: a harmonized set of definitions and standards that would eliminate inconsistencies such as the definition of a plastic bag; coordination of national objectives and plans; agreement on reporting standards and methodologies; and the establishment of a fund to build waste management facilities where they are most needed in less developed countries. A plastics convention could ban petroleum-based plastics in the same way as energy-intensive chemicals. Disposable bags and straws could expire almost immediately under a global contract, with other plastics being processed over a longer period of time. Those used in medical surgery may take decades to gradually disappear, but the industry could be helped to develop bioplastics or other alternatives to plastics. Recycling of course has a role to play, but the amount of plastic currently consumed would require huge investments in infrastructure that go far beyond current commitments. Even in highly developed countries such as the UK, infrastructure is under heavy supply pressure, with only 30-34% of UK consumers` plastic packaging currently being collected and recycled.

[1] Even with the best recycling technology available, the maximum recycling rate for the current plastic blend would only be between 36% and 53%. [2] Even if a plastic is recyclable or consists of recycled content, it still poses the same risk when it escapes into the natural environment. And of course, unlike other materials such as glass, plastic can only be recycled to a limited extent. The growing recognition that plastic pollution is a problem of global importance and that the existing global legal framework is inadequate to address it has opened a window of opportunity at the international level. Several options are explored with dedicated workflows. At the third session of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) in December 2017, countries joined forces to adopt a resolution on marine litter and microplastics. Now, CIEL is working with a coalition of partners to push for a binding treaty to tackle the global plastic crisis, from well extraction to marine pollution. Carrington, D. (2018).

Microplastic pollution in the oceans is far worse than feared, scientists say. ==External links==* Pettipas, S., Bernier, M., and Walker, T. R. (2016). A Canadian policy framework to reduce marine plastic pollution. Spoil. Guidelines 68, 117–122. doi: 10.1016/j.marpol.2016.02.025 No – EIA is not trying to ban all plastics. Plastic is used in our societies and in various sectors and industries for various purposes. Some of these apps are highly functional and difficult to replace – as with some medical apps – but most are not.

Every day, millions of tons of packaging and disposable items flock to the market to be used once and then quickly disposed of. It is a total waste and represents an unnecessary and totally avoidable environmental and social risk. For plastics placed on the market, they must be safe for use and recycling. Groh, K. J., Backhaus, T., Carney-Almroth, B., Geueke, B., Inostroza, P. A., Lennquist, A., et al. (2019). Overview of known chemicals related to plastic packaging and their dangers. Sci.

Total environment. 651, 3253–3268. doi: 10.1016/j.scitotenv.2018.10.015 Scandinavian countries traditionally hold talks on plastic waste, with Norway taking the lead as the current president of the UN Environment Assembly. But other groups of nations met and moved the conversation forward. Ecuador, Germany, Ghana and Vietnam have held several meetings, with another scheduled for September. Small island states, flooded with aborted plastic waste and having much to lose from climate change, held their own preliminary discussions. .