June 11, 2018 (VANCOUVER) – Today, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation announced the development of a new coalition on plastic pollution, urging the world’s largest companies to join and show leadership on the issue. Greenpeace, a member of the Break Free From Plastic movement, welcomed the intention of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation initiative, which seeks a higher ambition level from companies in addressing the root causes of plastic pollution.

The announcement follows the release of a G7 plastic charter, which acknowledges the plastics crisis, but fails to move beyond recycling efforts and voluntary agreements around single-use plastics.In response to today’s Ellen MacArthur Foundation announcement, Greenpeace Canada’s Head of Oceans & Plastics campaign Sarah King said:

“It is important for businesses to move beyond what is easy and convenient. They must recognize that while better recycling is important in the short term, we cannot simply recycle our way out of the plastics crisis we are facing today. A recycling rate of only 10-12 per cent in Canada combined with the sheer scale and volume of plastic production, predicted to quadruple by 2050, makes it clear that we will not solve this through recycling efforts.”

“To make real progress on the plastic pollution issue, corporations must fully acknowledge that the root of the problem is the throwaway culture they perpetuate, and that the immediate reduction of plastic production and consumption is essential. Real corporate leaders must embrace transparency and publicly report on their annual production, reduction, reuse, recycling, and disposal numbers for each type of plastic. Leaders must step forward to create a plastic footprint reduction policy with clear targets and timelines, prioritizing reuse and the elimination of unnecessary throwaway plastics over recycling. And finally, real leaders must invest heavily in reusable packaging and new delivery systems — because these corporations have the resources to innovate toward a plastic free future. In Canada we’ve seen no real leadership among retailers and major plastic producers to reduce their massive plastic footprint and we hope 2018 will be the year this changes.”


For more information, please contact:
Loujain Kurdi, Greenpeace Canada, Communications Officer, 514-577-6657, loujain.kurdi@greenpeace.org