© Carole Martinez
© Carole Martinez
In South Africa, the Virtuous Circle, a circular economy project led by a partnership of businesses and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), recycles waste packaging into school desks and other high value materials using new technologies - linking recycling to other societal goals, such as education and malnutrition. Through MARPLASTICCs, IUCN and business partners are exploring ways to replicate and expand this approach to other regions and countries.   On the coastline of Kenya, the Hemingways Watamu resort has launched eco-awareness programmes to educate local communities and tourists on safe disposal techniques for plastic waste. In parallel, NGOs, such as EcoWorld Watamu, established through initial seed funding from IUCN and AFEW play an important role in promoting plastic waste recycling. The organisation has used plastic waste collected by locals to create dynamic art work, furniture and other products that deliver incomes for locals, while maintaining clean beaches for tourism. (Virtuous Circle initiative in South Africa- from waste packaging to school desks © www.thevirtuouscircle.co.za)
In South Africa, the Virtuous Circle, a circular economy project led by a partnership of businesses and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), recycles waste packaging into school desks and other high value materials using new technologies - linking recycling to other societal goals, such as education and malnutrition. Through MARPLASTICCs, IUCN and business partners are exploring ways to replicate and expand this approach to other regions and countries. On the coastline of Kenya, the Hemingways Watamu resort has launched eco-awareness programmes to educate local communities and tourists on safe disposal techniques for plastic waste. In parallel, NGOs, such as EcoWorld Watamu, established through initial seed funding from IUCN and AFEW play an important role in promoting plastic waste recycling. The organisation has used plastic waste collected by locals to create dynamic art work, furniture and other products that deliver incomes for locals, while maintaining clean beaches for tourism. (Virtuous Circle initiative in South Africa- from waste packaging to school desks © www.thevirtuouscircle.co.za)

Business

IUCN is engaging and mobilising business actors in the fight against plastic pollution. To identify replicable effective solutions and drive cooperative circular economy innovations, IUCN is supporting the development of national private sector platforms.

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There is increased recognition across many sectors of the business community that plastic waste has economic value and can play a role in supporting inclusive green economic growth and creating jobs, while strengthening the waste sector. IUCN will continue to work with its business partners and build new partnerships to facilitate their shift from their current “take-make-dispose” model to a more circular plastic economy. IUCN is already engaging with companies to implement economically attractive solutions to reduce or even eliminate plastic waste and leakages from supply chains into the environment.

As a major contributor to the global problem of plastic pollution, Thailand is in a unique position to play an important role in the solution. The country’s public and private sectors are becoming increasingly aware of the problem, and in collaboration with IUCN, are taking action to tackle it.

Over the past few months, IUCN has established partnerships and engaged in discussions with a range of governmental authorities, civil society organisations and companies within the country, including Coca Cola, the Charoen Pokphand Group, Marriott, and the Thailand Business Council for Sustainable Development (TBCSD).

IUCN will also be the main technical partner for the “Public Private Partnership for Sustainable Plastic and Waste Management”, an ambitious multi-sector collaboration aspiring to halve Thailand’s ocean waste by 2037. Developed by the TBCSD, Plastic Industry Club, The Federation of Thai Industries, and Thailand Environment Institute, this partnership encourages the adoption of a Circular Economy principle for waste management. The various stakeholders will provide support for technological innovations, consumer education programmes, the development of a national plastics database and the implementation of a clean city model in various Thai provinces.

In partnership with Toyota, IUCN is also preparing to launch the Thailand Biodiversity Network Alliance (B-DNA) – the country’s first Business and Biodiversity platform. With an advisory committee composed of governmental agencies and civil society organisations, the platform seeks to strengthen the private sector’s role in nature conservation, with a particular focus on the Sustainable Development Goals, including tackling the marine plastic pollution crisis.

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