Plastic makers endorse new G7 Innovation Challenge to address marine plastic litter
September 28, 2018 – Plastics makers in Canada and the U.S. have endorsed the G7 Innovation Challenge to Address Marine Plastic Litter. The Innovation Challenge will incentivize the development of new technology and processes, generate new ideas and build on the successes and innovations happening now in the plastics value chain.
“Plastics don’t belong in the natural environment, especially oceans,” said Carol Hochu, President and CEO, Canadian Plastics Industry Association. “By working together with a focus on solutions, as we have here in Halifax, we all can improve the use and reuse of plastics.”
“Achieving goals through the lifecycle of plastics requires the discovery and adoption of new technologies and improved processes. The G7 Innovation Challenge, along with our industry’s focused targets, sets us all on a better path to getting plastics out of the marine environment,” said Bob Masterson, President and CEO of the Chemistry Industry Association of Canada.
The Innovation Challenge is a positive step toward accelerating the kind of collaboration that is already happening:
Earlier this year, plastic makers in Canada and the U.S. announced targets for 100 per cent of plastics packaging being re-used, recycled and recovered by 2040, and 100 per cent of plastics and packaging being recyclable or recoverable by 2030.
Since 2011, the plastics industry have been implementing a global declaration to develop solutions for marine plastic litter. Today, more than 75 plastics associations in 40 countries have signed on to the declaration, and cumulatively they have undertaken 355 projects to help address plastic waste.
Operation Clean Sweep, an initiative to keep plastics pellets, flake and powders out of the environment, has now been adopted by industry associations in 33 countries.
Industry innovation in recycling and recovery is capturing more post-use plastic waste and turning it into valuable new materials and processed fuels.
“The Innovation Challenge is a welcome positive reinforcement of the direction the global plastics industry is moving, bringing solutions to the largest sources of ocean plastics,” said Steve Russell, Vice President of Plastics for the American Chemistry Council.
“Marine debris is a global issue, but through the coordinated effort of industry, governments and NGOs we can strengthen recovery systems and prevent the loss of any plastics,” said William R. Carteaux, President and CEO, Plastics Industry Association.
“We are committed to being part of the solution. If we’re serious about solving the problem of marine debris, we need to invest in recycling infrastructure and innovations that make it easier for everyone to dispose of plastic products properly.”