New Plastics Economy Initiative Brings Together 40 Leading Companies and Cities

Ellen Macarthur Foundation
Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The New Plastics Economy initiative kicks off today with an inaugural workshop that brings together more than 40 leading companies including Amcor, Coca-Cola, DuPont, Indorama Ventures, L'Oréal, MARS, M&S, Natureworks, Novamont, Sealed Air, SUEZ, The Dow Chemical Company, Unilever, and Veolia, as well as front-running cities like Copenhagen and the London Waste and Recycling Board.


Building on the recommendations of the report The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics, launched at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos in January, the three-year initiative takes a concrete first step towards the design of a plastics system grounded in circular economy principles. The report, which attracted global media attention, arguably provides the first comprehensive view of the global plastic packaging value chain, highlighting its contributions but also revealing significant drawbacks. With material value loss running at $80-120 billion a year in the industry and negative environmental externalities costing at least $40 billion a year – a figure greater than the plastic packaging industry’s profit pool – the opportunity for the global economy of transforming the system is clear.


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