PLASTICS RECYCLING OCEANIA
Launch of “Anzpac” pact to tackle plastics waste / Four targets by 2025 / Part of Ellen MacArthur Foundation's global “Plastics Pact”
Governments, businesses and NGOs from across the plastics supply chain in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands launched the “Anzpac Plastics Pact” (Anzpac) on 18 May 2021.

Major supermarket chains and multinational brands such as Australia’s Coles (www.coles.com.au), Nestlé (Vevey / Switzerland; www.nestle.com), Coca-Cola (Atlanta, Georgia / USA; www.coca-colacompany.com) and PepsiCo (Harrison, New York / USA; www.pepsico.com) are among 60 signatories to the pact, which at the time of launch also announced it had joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s (EMF, Cowes / UK; www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org) global “Plastics Pact” (see Plasteurope.com of 09.03.2020). EMF’s Plastics Pact is a network of initiatives around the world that brings together key stakeholders at national or regional level to implement solutions towards a circular economy for plastics.

“To tackle plastic waste effectively we need to find solutions that aren’t constrained by national borders or old ways of thinking. Through the Plastics Pact model, we will bring together the complete plastic supply chain across the entire Oceania region, and by working with our global partners through the Plastics Pact network, develop solutions that deliver real and tangible change to the plastic problem for our region,” said Brooke Donnelly, CEO of Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (Apco, Sydney; www.apco.org.au), Anzpac’s lead organisation.

Apco has worked closely with EMF and Wrap UK (Banbury; www.wrap.org.uk) during the past three years to develop Anzpac. The pact is also the first in the Pacific region to join EMF’s Plastics Pact network.

“As part of the UK’s support of the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance, we have been supporting the Pacific islands to tackle plastic pollution,” said David Rogers, head of international development at Wrap. “Being part of Anzpac is a really powerful way to ensure these important islands have greater influence in ending the tide of plastics that wash up on their shores every day.”
Alignment of targets for 2025
Members have pledged to reach four targets by 2025. These include eliminating unnecessary and problematic plastic packaging; making all plastic packaging reusable, recyclable or compostable; increasing the collection and recycling of plastic packaging to 25%; and raising the recycled content to an average of 25%. The next immediate steps for Anzpac are to develop a roadmap for action.

Speaking to Australian broadcaster ABC, Jenni Downes, a research fellow at Monash University’s (Melbourne / Australia; www.monash.edu) Sustainable Development Institute, said in broad terms, Anzpac’s regional approach was “a step in the right direction”.

“What I’m hoping for is that this will also be a way of Australia and New Zealand being able to support the Pacific region, which has different but just as challenging issues with plastic,” she said, noting that the pact’s aims overlapped with Australia's existing 2025 national packaging targets that Apco established in 2018. Downes added that it was also important to establish a good system to ensure that there is a market for recycled plastics once products are collected.

Apco figures for 2018-2019 showed that about 1m t of plastics were sold in Australia, but only 18% of that was recycled. Donnelly added that more than 800,000 t of the country’s plastics waste ends up in landfill or the environment every year.

Anzpac said if it failed to act, the volume of polymers on the market would double by 2040, the annual volume entering the ocean would almost triple and ocean plastics stocks would quadruple.
25.05.2021 Plasteurope.com [247671-0]
Published on 25.05.2021

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Date of print: 05.08.2021 22:51:17   (Ref: 505181597)
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