Motivating actions to mitigate plastic pollution

Lili Jia, Steve Evans & Sander van der Linden, Nature Communcations Plastics & Pollution

Motivating actions to mitigate plastic pollution
John Cameron on Unsplash

While plastics are ubiquitous in daily life, reducing plastic pollution requires actions from all stakeholders to encourage a more sustainable use of plastics. For example, individuals need to reduce consumption and minimise their plastic waste. Industries need to take on producer responsibility and design plastic products that minimise negative environmental impacts throughout their lifecycles. Governments need to raise public awareness about plastic waste, restrict toxic and avoidable plastic usages and improve plastic waste management for recycling and remanufacturing. Many of these actions, however, are currently lacking. From 2009 to 2017, global demand for plastics increased at 4% annually and plastic waste has continued to grow. Industries rarely explore the potential of eco-design to reduce, reuse and recycle plastic waste—most of which has gone to incineration or landfills leading to a huge loss in natural resource value. 

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