Uruguay: towards an international treaty against plastic pollution

From November 28 to December 2, the first international meeting on plastic pollution was held. The aim: to lay the foundations for a future treaty to combat the impact of plastic on terrestrial and marine ecosystems. 

©AlexisRosenfeld

Every year, over 400 million tonnes of plastic are produced on Earth, ending up in landfill, burnt or in the environment. Of this often single-use waste, 8 million tonnes ends up in the oceans, with serious consequences for marine environments. Plastic does not disappear; it degrades into fine particles, altering the composition of water and marine organisms. 

To combat the harmful effects of plastic production, delegates from 160 countries, together with representatives of the plastics industry and scientists, gathered in Punta del Este, Uruguay. The main aim of this first phase of negotiations was to define the terms of the treaty and organize working groups.

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