Plastics and Circular Economy Community Solutions
Plastics have become an integral part of our daily life: from plastic straws and shopping bags to laptop computers and construction materials. The linear model of “take, make, use, and dispose” plastic materials poses a grave threat to the sustainability of our economy and environment. By 2050 there will be about 12 billion tonnes of plastic litter in landfills and the natural environment. Recent research also suggests that cost of plastics on environmental degradation, climate change, and health hazards are reaching US$139 billion annually.
In alignment with UNDP Strategic Plan and GEF’s programming directions, the GEF Small Grants Programme, implemented by UNDP, has been providing technical and financial support to projects led by civil society organizations and communities to test innovative approaches and practices for plastic waste management through a circular economy approach, which promotes closed-loop production and consumption. Such innovative practices include promoting “reduce, reuse, and recycle” plastics through material engineering and product design, shifting consumer use and behaviour, and developing sound approaches to waste collection and management.