To achieve the Ocean Conservancy goal of zero plastic in the ocean by 2030, the economics of collection must improve. While there has been clear progress with widespread policy and private sector commitments to reduce current levels, more effort is needed.
This report by Ocean Conservancy in association with Accenture identifies five guiding principles for success:
1.Combine measures across the value chain: Real value lies in combining measures within both the public and private sectors in innovative ways.
2.Engage and invest in the informal sector: Measures must support the human rights and livelihoods of those on the frontline of collection efforts. Dignified employment with improved working conditions and leveraging the expertise of independent waste collectors can drive improvements in collection quantity and efficiency.
3.Drive consumer awareness and behaviour change: Consumer buy in is a critical enabler of a successful plastic waste-management framework, and focus countries need targeted awareness campaigns to engage key audiences.
4.Inspire political will: Leaders at national and local levels should be motivated and empowered to support solutions.
5.Improve enforcement at a national and local level: Measures are only as good as the ability to enforce them. Strong national policy requires a clear direction and rule of law. Policy must be enforced at the local level, which requires improved capacity for action.