We Choose Reuse campaign publishes open letter

Break Free from Plastic announces open letter as part of ‘We Choose Reuse’ campaign, demands strong political action to set up successful reuse systems; highlights current challenges such high investment and operating costs; letter already signed by 93 businesses and will be delivered to officials on June 16, 2021

As You Sow: Investments in plastics may become stranded assets

Civil society organization As You Sow releases report investigating financial risks of shifting investments from fossil fuels to petrochemical sector, including plastics; finds $400 billion at risk of becoming stranded assets, relies on rising demand in low-income countries; neglects climate impacts, plastic pollution, circular economy goals; advises investors to re-evaluate risks and take action

India plans ban on single-use plastic items

Government authority publishes draft ban set to come into force in three phases; would ban import, manufacture, and sale of plastic candy and ice cream sticks after January 1, 2022; expands ban to include plates, cups, cutlery, trays, certain wrapping films after July 1, 2022; proposal open for public comment until May 2021

UN report addresses single-use plastics and LCA

Life Cycle Initiative led by UN Environment publishes synthesis report investigating impacts of single-use plastic products through life cycle assessment (LCA) approach; finds concept of ‘single-use’ more problematic than ‘plastic’; encourages countries to promote and incentivize replacing single-use products with reusable products; keep products at highest value in economy for as long as possible

Break Free from Plastic Pollution Act reintroduced in US

Updated version of bill continues to plan for nationwide extended producer responsibility scheme, minimum recycled content limits, deposit system, single-use plastic bans; new focus on promoting refillable containers, establishing three-year stop on construction of new plastic and chemical recycling facilities

John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight features plastics

Last Week Tonight episode focuses on plastic recycling, reports only nine percent of all plastics recycled, functioning systems only established for polyethylene terephthalate, polyethylene; discusses Basel Convention restricting plastic waste trade, criticizes misleading closed-loop recycling claims; recommends targeted bans, introducing extended producer responsibility schemes

EFSA guide on applications for plastics recycling processes

European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) publishes administrative guide on how to submit applications for new plastic recycling processes for products intended for food contact; describes procedures, timelines for handling applications; will be updated as necessary

EFSA working group updates in November 2020 to March 2021

Minutes from recent meetings of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) CEP panel and working groups on bisphenol A (BPA), food contact materials (FCMs), recycling plastics, and phthalates published; groups continue discussions and revisions of draft opinions; new working group on re-evaluation of phthalates and structurally similar substances in FCMs launched

Canada Plastics Pact launched

Canada most recent country to launch a plastics pact within the Ellen Macarthur Foundation’s global initiative; aims to by 2025 achieve 100% reusable, recyclable, or compostable plastic packaging, 50% effective recycle or compost rate, minimum 30% recycled content

EEA report presents pathways toward circular plastics economy

European Environment Agency (EEA) publishes report on plastics, their impact on the environment and climate, and their place in an EU circular economy; three joint pathways for achieving necessary change identified based on smarter use, increased circularity, and renewable raw material