In a press release published on February 21, 2019, the consulting firm Quantis announced the launch of the “Plastic Leak Project” that aims to “develop robust metrics to help shape operational solutions and effective actions to address the plastic and microplastic pollution crisis.” The initiative currently contains 18 industry members along with a strategic committee of four international organizations including the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

The press release writes that many “quick fixes” currently in discussion have focused on the end-of-life of plastics such as bans on single use plastics and new taxes. However, the initiative argues that “these measures, while critical for reducing plastic waste, do not get to the root causes of plastic leakage” and points out that plastic leakage can also occur earlier in the life cycle during the use phase, production phase, or even earlier in the supply chain depending on the industry. The initiative aims to provide “a metrics-driven methodology to assess plastic leakage in Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and an industry-specific guidance that enables companies to locate and assess plastic leakage along their value chains.” Quantis plans for the guidance developed during the project to be publicly released early next year.

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Quantis (February 21, 2019). “Global Plastic Leak Project kicks off to tackle plastic and microplastic leakage.