Panel III: Working Together to Beat Plastics Pollution

Date and time: Tuesday, 12 March, 10:00


Venue: Expo Hub


Short Description:

The panel of leading experts, representing actors across the value chain, will describe how concerted action addressing the key levers to shift away from a linear plastics economy will beat plastics pollution and make way for a new plastics economy where the resources are kept at high value within the economy. Action by different actors in the private sector (plastic manufacturers, goods producers, recyclers…), policy-makers, and citizens will be presented in the panel.




Plastic waste and pollution (including Marine plastic litter and microplastic) have captured the attention around the world. Concerted and ambitious action is required from all actors in the value chain to transition from a wasteful linear system to a new model where plastics stay at their highest value within the economy, never becoming waste nor polluting the environment. Private sector must come up with innovative business models that build on the value of plastics and reuse plastic products, as well as new innovative technologies and materials that maximize the value of plastic and all other resources within the economy. Governments must provide the necessary policy framework to encourage reuse and recycling, while stopping problematic and unnecessary plastic products from entering the economy, and partner with the private sector to ensure the necessary infrastructure is in place to collect and manage the resources once products reach their end of use. And we need individual citizens to be informed and demand the best alternatives, while supporting a resource efficient society through their ways of living.


UN Environment promotes such a life cycle approach in which the key hotspots and levers for action by the different actors in the value chain are first identified with a robust scientific method. Then, the most promising actions are promoted in a concerted manner through advice to governments and support of business sector, as well as informing consumer information and education activities. Such initiatives include the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, the Global Partnership on Marine Litter and its Clean Seas campaign, and the Global Plastics Platform.



Possible outcome/impact:

The 2019 Expo will seek to scale up these efforts by convening forward-thinking businesses and organizations in the plastics pollution space, advocacy organizations, and dynamic start-ups to partner and scale up eco-innovative solutions to our waste-and-pollution-intensive consumer society. Another important outcome will be strengthening the initiatives hosted in UN Environment to fight plastics pollution, marine litter and microplastics, including the Global Plastics Platform, the Global Partnership on Marine Litter and its Clean Seas Campaign and the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment in partnership with the Ellen McArthur Foundation. *Please note that these outcomes are likely to contribute to Priorities of the Draft Ministerial Declaration.



Moderator: Ms Pippa Notten, Owner, The Green House, South Africa


Panelists Invited:


  1. HE Ms Carolina Schmidt, Minister of Environment, Chile
  2. HE Ms Dr Siti Nurbaya, Minister of Environment and Forestry, Republic of Indonesia
  3. Mr Hugo Schally, European Commission
  4. Mr Martin Kayser, Senior Vice President, Product Safety BASF, Alliance to End Plastic Waste
  5. Mr Ashok Menon, Corporate Sustainability Division at SABIC, India
  6. Mr Jocelyn Blériot, Ellen McArthur Foundation, UK


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