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The importance of a robust science-policy interface is widely acknowledged and practiced under various governance mechanisms. Similar to existing science-policy structures on climate change and biodiversity, plastic pollution governance requires a solid science-based mechanism which will provide up-to-date and policy-relevant information on plastic pollution.

In 2022, the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA) adopted resolution 5/8 to establish a Science-Policy Panel (SPP) to further contribute to the sound management of chemicals and waste and to prevent pollution. The resolution established an ad hoc open-ended working group (OEWG).

In parallel, UNEA also adopted resolution 5/14 mandating intergovernmental negotiations towards a global legally binding instrument towards eliminating plastic pollution. It is widely agreed that the implementation of the legally binding instrument will require the generation, review, and regular monitoring of robust and continuous scientific evidence.

GRID-Arendal in a partnership with the University of Wollongong has initiated a project looking into the Science-Policy interface on plastic pollution. This new study aims to 1) identify the needs for scientific and technical information relevant to the effective functioning of the plastics instrument and the possible functions needed to deliver them, and 2) consider how the work of the SPP and the plastics instrument can connect and complement each other.

As part of this process an Advisory Group on science-policy interface for the new plastics agreement was established to provide relevant voluntary inputs to the project. The Advisory Group consists of representatives from Member States, civil society, academia and other relevant institutions.

Tags: plastic pollution treaty science policy interface

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 partners and donors.

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