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Global brands call for UN treaty on plastic pollution

A legally binding United Nations treaty to tackle plastic pollution is being sought by consortium of international companies including Tomra, Nestlé and Ikea.

Signatories, who believe solutions should be based on a circular economy, are calling for action later this year at a meeting of the UN Environment Assembly. They point out that pollution does not recognise international boundaries and the solution requires a co-ordinated response to tackle problems at source.

‘We recognise that we have a role in the global effort aimed at stopping plastic pollution and are committed to tackling this issue,’ they say in a joint statement. ‘We have set concrete targets to create a circular economy for plastics and address this challenge through voluntary initiatives, such as the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment and Plastics Pacts, ReSource: Plastic, and many others. However, these actions alone cannot solve this issue.’ 

They argue UN treaty could lead to the harmonisation of regulatory standards, mandate national targets and action plans, define common metrics and methodologies and support innovation and infrastructure development.

The signatories conclude: ‘The business imperative is clear. We must work together to solve this problem. Therefore, we urge the member states of the United Nations to urgently commence negotiations on a treaty on plastic pollution. There is no time to waste.’

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