End Plastic Pollution Plan calls for ambitious action

30 November 2022

Together with Surfers Against Sewage, Resource Futures has launched a Strategic National Action Plan to align the UK with the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) Treaty on Plastic Pollution and put an end to plastic pollution.

The Strategic National Action Plan to End Plastic Pollution was launched on Tuesday 29 November at a parliamentary event attended by MPs including Geraint Davies, the Labour (Co-op) MP for Swansea West who is writing a ‘plastic reduction bill’.

Download the Action Plan here

The time to act is now. Plastics have been found in human blood, placenta and breast milk. Plastic pollution has spread to even the remotest regions of the world, from the deepest ocean trench to Mount Everest. Our report aims to end plastic pollution in the UK forever and sets out a practical but ambitious policy package to achieve this.

George Cole, Director at Resource Futures

The Strategic National Action Plan launches the same week that the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) meets in Uruguay to kickstart negotiations on developing an international and legally binding treaty to end plastic pollution by 2040.

The Global Treaty on Plastic Pollution was requested by the UNEA in March 2022 when it adopted resolution 5/14 “End Plastic Pollution: Towards an International Legally Binding Instrument”. Its purpose is to develop a new global agreement combatting plastic pollution by the end of 2024, with adoption in 2025.

It is considered the single most important opportunity to accelerate progress towards a circular economy and, earlier this month, 85 global organisations formed a coalition to bring together businesses from across the plastics value chain in support of the development of an ambitious and effective treaty.

In Uruguay this week, the UK will be guiding discussion on bringing an end to global plastic pollution, along with other United Nations member countries. So far, the UK has been active player; co-sponsoring the UNEA resolution upon which resolution 5/14 was based and subsequently joining the High Ambition Coalition, a group of countries committed to developing the best possible agreement.

With the UK well placed to create a blueprint for effective domestic action, our Strategic National Action Plan to End Plastic Pollution provides a comprehensive policy package for policymakers to act and be the catalyst for a bold UK policy agenda.

There’s never been a better time to act on plastic pollution. We are all aligned in our ambition, we just need Government to set an ambitious plan for industry players to follow. This National Action Plan hopes to achieve that.

Carla Worth, Senior Consultant at Resource Futures

Alongside Surfers Against Sewage, we are calling on the UK Government to:

  • Produce a Strategic National Action Plan to end plastic pollution;
  • Define time-bound specific and measurable goals within the plan; and
  • Define and commit to steps ambitious enough to achieve those goals.

Globally agreed targets and actions will create the frameworks needed for national-level plastic pollution reduction plans and implementation, and ultimately a clear-cut path towards a completely reformed plastics economy.

Download the Action Plan here