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While Pacific Island countries (PICs) waste contributions are negligible, the impact marine plastics have on these nations is anything but. The challenges that PICs face in regards to plastic pollution are intense and in many ways unique. These issues are further exacerbated by the inability of PICs to subsist in their own living needs, leading to high levels of importation of goods packaged in plastics.


There is a recent increase in global movements to end plastic pollution, and PICs now officially recognize the holistic impacts that plastics pose. Despite the impacts of the issue and the demonstrated political will to address it, the scale of the plastic problem is largely unknown which hinders the capacity to address the issue. Most waste audits do not reflect a complete picture of how much plastic is leaked into the environment. This project aims to address this gap in knowledge, helping to provide governments the data they need to address the issue more effectively. The target countries are: Kiribati, Samoa, Tonga, Vanuatu


The key outcomes of the project are:


· Establish the economic rationale to invest in plastic waste management programs that will reduce negative economic, social and environmental impacts.

· Provide a rationale for different types of interventions based on the trade-offs between the status quo and alternative “pre-consumer” approaches such as reducing imports and use of plastics and introducing environmentally-friendly alternative products, and “post-consumer” approaches such as recycling and other appropriate waste management strategies.

· Identify feasible/cost-effective/practical policy intervention options and investments to be included in the design of national and regional plastics management strategies and approaches, based on measurable indicators of the impact of plastic on key economic sectors, and to achieve the highest net benefits to the economies as a whole.

· Produce an implementation roadmap for the development of national and regional level policies and strategies for reducing marine plastic waste, particularly SUPs, appropriate to the PIC context.

Tags: marine environment Pacific island countries plastics

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