As we seek an equitable transition to a circular economy, it’s clear that business as usual is not an option. At current consumption, we will double the extraction of materials by 2060 beyond planetary boundaries. We continue to discard an estimated 11 million metric tons of plastic that ends up in oceans every year, a number that could triple by 2040. And, our fashion system promotes a make-take-waste approach that overuses energy, ends up in landfills, and pollutes water systems.
Yet we already see positive signs of change towards more sustainable systems that can be replicated and scaled. P4G’s Zero Waste Green Industry theme takes a multi-pronged approach to reducing, reusing and recycling materials to achieve a circular economy. Our partnerships drive efficiency and leverage investment in sustainable industrial clusters, plastics and textiles recovery and recycling.
In Indonesia, Siklus eliminates the use of plastics at the source by offering household products to consumers through refill solutions. In the end, consumers pay less for products because they don’t have to pay for the significant costs associated with packaging. By eliminating the need for single-use plastic, the partnership has prevented over 200,000 sachets from entering the ocean and landfills. The partnership, which has gained international recognition for its innovative approach, helps meet key priorities of the Indonesian government to reduce marine plastic debris by 70% by 2025.
The 3R (Reduce, Recover, Recycle) Initiative (3RI) partnership launched a new plastic stewardship initiative in February 2021 that will establish the world’s first comprehensive framework for companies to verifiably manage and reduce plastic waste.
Connecting the reusing and recycling stages, the Circular Fashion Partnership collects pre-consumer textile waste and repurposes it into new fashion products, while improving the transparency and traceability of waste in the system. This partnership is unique in its ability to bring together brands, manufacturers, and recyclers in circular commercial collaborations. Through P4G’s whole-of-network support, the partnership continues to increase the volumes of tradeable waste in the system and creates additional economic value throughout the textile supply chain, which is essential in Bangladesh’s recovery from Covid-19 and its objective to lead as a sustainable textiles hub.
Another partnership working across the circular economy value chain is Sustainable Special Economic Zones (SSEZ), which is transforming industrial parks into hubs for low-carbon, sustainable and inclusive, business and community growth. The partnership, which recently signed an MOU with P4G to scale sustainable industrial clusters, benefitted from P4G’s regulatory support in moving forward conversations with the Kenyan National Platform to advance the country’s Big 4 Agenda around green manufacturing and job creation.
These partnerships offer innovative solutions to solving national and international priorities. With less than a month until COP26, it is essential that we take action to rapidly scale these models to re-design a circular economy that enables a just transition.
Randy and Anteneh