Nations Sign UN Resolution to End Plastic Menace

Published on: 3 March 2022 07:10 PM
by KnowESG

A Brief Summary

Delegates from more than 170 nations have signed a UN resolution aimed at plastic pollution. It will address the lifecycle of plastic, including its design, production and disposal. The resolution adopted at the fifth session of the UN Environment Assembly will help pave the way for a legally binding global treaty by 2024 to end the plastic menace.

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The three-day environment forum attended by more than 4000 people in person and virtually from 175 UN member states pledged to back legal tools, which will bring an end to plastic pollution.

Espen Barth Eide, the minister for Climate and Environment of Norway, also the outgoing president of UNEA-5, said the resolution would eliminate plastic pollution and transform from a linear to a circular economy that creates jobs and enhances human and ecological health.

"Plastic pollution has grown into an epidemic. With today's resolution, we are officially on track for a cure," Eide remarked, adding that the treaty would address plastic pollution from the source to end-users.

The resolution proposed by India, Japan, Peru and Rwanda has been in the limelight for discussions at the three-day global environment forum with other global issues such as climate change and biodiversity loss.

World leaders address the resolution as the most significant environmental accord after the Paris climate deal of 2015.

The executive director of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), Inger Andersen, said it is a booster to act on plastic waste at the earliest and was a victory of multilateralism and humanity's quest to live on a clean and healthy planet.

"Today marks a triumph by planet earth over single-use plastics. It is the most significant environmental multilateral deal since the Paris accord. It is an insurance policy for this generation and future ones, so they may live with plastic and not be doomed by it," she added.

UNEP statistics show that plastic generation surged from 2 million tons in 1950 to 348 million tons in 2017, which is a formidable industrial growth valued at 522.6 billion U.S. dollars.

The resolution vows to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25 per cent and create 7,00,000 jobs in the global south, said UNEP.