Plastic pollution is one of the greatest human-made threats our planet faces. Of the approximately 275 million metric tons of plastic waste produced annually, up to 12 million tons leak into oceans, wreaking havoc on livelihoods and ecosystems. The result is an estimated $13 billion in annual environmental damage to marine ecosystems, in addition to other economic losses and significant health and human concerns.
The plastic crisis is inherently transboundary, and it requires a concerted and coordinated global response to address it adequately.
The United Nations Environmental Assembly has adopted several resolutions to address the crisis, but they are ultimately insufficient. To prevent plastic pollution in marine and other environments, the global community will need a dedicated instrument—a Convention on Plastic Production—that will address the full lifecycle of plastic from production and design to waste prevention and management.
The Convention on Plastic Pollution: Toward a new global agreement to address plastic pollution provides a structural and conceptual framework for such a convention.