On February 9th, 2022, the Global Plastics Treaty Dialogues IV were convened…
We saw representatives from Environmental Investigation Agency and the The Secretariat of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm (BRS) Conventions give presentations on what to expect out of UNEA 5.2 and answer questions from 130+ participants.
There were a range of presentations at Global Plastics Treat Dialogues IV from plastic experts the world over. Just some of the topics covered included:
- UNEA 5.2 Briefing: What to Expect
- Possible Outcomes and Expected Paths Forward on the Global Treaty
- A Review of OPLN's Country Dialogues
- Envisioning the Path Forward: A Global Treaty in 2022 and Beyond.
The Global Plastics Treaty Dialogues
The Global Plastics Treaty Dialogues is an ongoing, quarterly, activist-to-industry year long series of global online summits in advance of the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) decision in February 2022 on whether to pursue a global treaty for plastics.
An estimated 11 million metric tons of plastic enter our oceans each year. That’s a garbage truck and a half of plastic every minute of every day. If we delay dramatic action by just five years an additional 80 million metric tons of plastic will end in the ocean by 2040. That’s fourteen Great Pyramids or two hundred fifty Empire State Buildings worth of plastic trash
That won’t just mean more beached whales with stomachs full of plastic; the human consequences will be extreme too. Healthy ocean ecosystems absorb CO2. A dead ocean has dire consequences for the climate. Plastic has already been found in the air, in the rain, in our bodies, and in our food supply.
To inform the Global Treaty Dialogues and inform national actions plans, OPLN helps convene dialogues with local stakeholders in specific countries. Throughout 2022, we are committed to helping Activist-to-Industry stakeholders the world over come together and have productive dialogues towards participation in a potential global treaty. Every country needs to figure into the global solution to plastic pollution.
On January 13th, 2022, the Country Dialogues kicked off with an inaugural session in Chile. Together with Plastic Oceans Chile, we convened an online session with support from the Chilean Ministry of the Environment (MMA), WWF Chile, Acción Empresas, Circular, Master of Environmental Law UDD, among others. More than 100 representatives of universities, the private sector, and organized civil society took part.
"This national dialogue is a first step to provide an input to the negotiations on this treaty from the point of view of non-governmental sectors and to build awareness of a global policy that complements and reinforces the national actions of governments, industry and civil society,” said Mark Minneboo, Executive Director of Plastic Oceans Chile.
More sessions in Chile will take place throughout 2022. Check back here in Spring for a report on the Chile Country Dialogues.
A beach cleanup on Easter Island (Rapa Nui). Credit: Plastic Oceans Chile / Plastic Oceans International
On January 27, 2022, the US held its first session of Country Dialogues. In attendance were 100+ participants from an Activist-to-Industry network, 17 of which were representatives of US governmental organizations.
We were joined by a range of stakeholders engaging all parts of the plastics issue, including Monica Medina, Assistant Secretary of State for Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs; legislative experts from the offices of Congressman Alan Lowenthal of California’s 47th District and Senator Jeff Merkley of Oregon; environmental justice advocate Sharon Lavigne, the 2021 Goldman Prize Recipient for North America; and many more.
Due to the work of activists and industry alike on the ocean plastics issue, and the US announcing support for multilateral negotiations to begin on a global agreement Fall of 2021.
More sessions in the US will take place throughout 2022.