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The impacts of marine plastic pollution range from ecological to socioeconomic, and cost the world at least US$8 billion dollars per year. Curbing plastic flows to the sea depends on reshaping the plastic economy while conserving its recyclable utility for modern living and ensuring waste is effectively and responsibly collected and managed. Key elements for a new pathway include material redesign that makes plastic recyclable from inception, sustainable product and packaging design, effective and clean technologies to collect, recycle and manage the current amount of plastic waste, and networks of stakeholders – producers, recyclers and consumers – to build new models of sustainable production and consumption that underpin circular reduce-reuse-recycle- based economies.

This two-year project will harness the knowledge and experience of project partners in examining marine plastics and the value chain created or lost throughout their life cycles. This analysis contributes to developing a strategic roadmap for building systemic models that stop plastics from flowing into the ocean and fully integrate them in circular economies at local, national and global scales. Targeted areas for developing proofs of concept include sites in Asia-Pacific region where plastic leakage is among the highest globally.

Addressing Marine Litter is an initiative of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and is managed by GRID-Arendal on behalf of the UN Environment. Project partners include Ocean Conservancy, Ellen MacArthur Foundation and UN Environment through its Ecosystem and Economy Divisions, among others.

Status: In progress

Type: Marine

Programme: Waste and Marine Litter

Tags: Plastic Waste Marine Plastic Marine Litter Marine Debris GEF

Related Sustainable Development Goals

GRID-Arendal's activities support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).


GRID-Arendal's activities are nearly always a cooperative undertaking made possible through collaboration with our various partners, and donors.

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