NEW PLASTICS ECONOMY
AT FUNDACIÓN CHILE:
Chilean Plastic Pacts presents Roadmap so that plastics do not impact the environment
• The Roadmap seeks to become the national strategy for plastic elements' use; moving towards a circular economy, where plastics have no impact on the environment.
• Over 50 organizations were involved in its development, identifying 18 challenges, finding 35 solutions, and coming up with 81 initiatives.
Encouraging the circular design of plastic containers and packaging; enabling the funding of more sustainable alternatives to problematic and unnecessary plastics; supporting the development of local network base recyclers, are part of the solutions identified in the Roadmap of the Chilean Plastics Pact (PCP) that was officially launched today at Fundación Chile in an activity led by the Metropolitan Region’s Environmental Secretary, Diego Riveaux, and Fundación Chile’s CEO, Marcos Kulka
The activity counted with the presence of Pablo Terrazas, Corfo’s Executive Vice President, Luisa Santiago, Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s leader for Latin America; Andrés Pesce, Foundation Chile’s VP of Business Development and Sustainability, and business leaders and NGO members associated to the Chilean Plastic Pact.
The Roadmap seeks to become the national strategy for the use of plastic elements transitioning towards a circular economy, where plastic has no impact on the environment. The goal is to guide the action plan of the Chilean Plastics Pact and provide concrete guidelines at a national level to all actors involved in the plastics value chain in order to share a common vision and guide their strategies.
Given the urgency, Chile was the third country in the world to join the Plastics Pact Global Network and by collaborating, we have been able to develop a roadmap that will allow us to strongly move towards a circular economy for plastics”, Diego Riveaux, the Regional Secretary of Environment RM”.
Over 50 organizations, entailing 80 participants, were involved throughout its development identifying 18 challenges, finding 35 solutions and 81 initiatives. Some of the participants were tech alliances, recyclers, producers of plastics -container and packaging-, regulators/government, plastic waste managers, municipalities, retail & logistics, organizations representing consumers and packaged goods companies.
Diego Riveaux, the Metropolitan Region’s Environmental Regional Secretary, stated that “plastic pollution caused by the improper use and management of this material is one of the major challenges our planet has to deal with. It is estimated that 8 million tons of plastic reach the oceans each year, and if we do not change this trend, there will be more plastic than fish in the sea by 2050. Given the urgency, Chile was the third country in the world to join the Plastics Pact Global Network and by collaborating, we have been able to develop a roadmap that will allow us to strongly move towards a circular economy for plastics.”
Riveaux added that “this roadmap is a significant step towards making Chile a cleaner country establishing ambitious goals and setting out the path we must follow as a country in order to build a circular economy for plastics, win which waste no longer exists.”
Fundación Chile’s CEO, Marcos Kulka, noted that the Roadmap “goes far beyond plastic, as it is part of a reinvention of the future as well as the type of solutions that our country needs in order to break the linear economy and move towards a circular economy. It brings together different actors, promotes innovation, culture and dialogue with a concrete goal.”
For his part, Corfo’s Executive Vice President, Pablo Terrazas, said that “the economic model is not an end itself, but rather a tool that we must know how to use to solve the problems in Chile. Accordingly, what we are doing with the circular economy is using it as an economic development model for the benefit of the environment. This initiative is at the heart Corfo’s spirit, namely, greater productivity, greater efficiency, and more innovation. It is no coincidence that between 2018 and 2019 Corfo subsidized over $1.8 billion in projects that aimed at this type of circular economy solutions.”
On the occasion, Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s representative for Latin America, Luisa Santiago, stated that “the idea is not to eliminate plastic from the world, but to migrate to a system that allows it to remain in the economy and not become waste for the environment. However, she asserted that this entails eliminating those that are problematic or unnecessary, as well as those hazardous materials that make it difficult to remain in this new economy.”
The Roadmap sets out the short, medium and long term challenges and initiatives for each commitment previously defined by the PCP members in July, 2019. They become the traction cores that must be met by 2025 and that should be addressed in the areas of Innovation, Infrastructure, Regulatory Framework and Culture.
Traction core or goal 1, seeks to take action to eliminate problematic and unnecessary plastic packaging and products through redesign, innovation or alternative delivery models. Some initiatives that stand out are: developing a study that defines a priority list of problematic and unnecessary containers, packaging and utensils in the Chilean context and to make a call for entrepreneurs and suppliers to identify and support the offer of innovative alternatives in the market for the problematic elements.
Goal 2 seeks to ensure that 100% of packaging designed is reusable, recyclable or compostable. Among the initiatives described for this goal are: developing a design guide for recyclability that will be updated according to technological and infrastructure changes; generating educational content on eco-design and implementing open innovation programs among startups and corporations to develop and implement circular solutions for plastic packaging.
Commitment 3 seeks to ensure that 1/3 of household and non-household plastic containers and packaging are reused, recycled or composted suggesting, among other things, to generate incentives for at-source sorting; developing a program to attract investors to install sorting and/or recovery plants, and supporting the development of the local network of base recyclers.
Lastly, commitment 4 seeks that packaging has, among its different formats, an average of 25% recycled material. It therefore proposes to establish a regulation for the incorporation of recycled material in packaging; to use post-industrial recycling as basis of recycled material, starting with secondary and tertiary packaging.
It is worth noting that the Roadmap also seeks generating social capital, creating relationships of trust and collaboration between all parties involved in the plastics system. This will be carried out through a transparent and independent dialogue platform that ensures equal conditions and will materialize in shared benefit agreements that, when implemented, will allow progress in its vision and the common good.
The activity was concluded with a discussion panel on the importance of taking action coordinately and together with all the representatives of civil society. Participants included Soledad Mella, leader of the National Movement of Chilean Recyclers; Michel Compagnon, Commercial Manager at Comberplast; Jorge Aranda, CEO at EcoCarga Chile; Paola Díaz, Development and Sustainability Engineer at Amcor; Guillermo González, Head of the Circular Economy Bureau of the Ministry of the Environment, and Isidro Pereda, CEO of the ABChile Packaging Management System.
Chile is the first country in Latin America to formalize and launch the third Pact of the Plastics Pact Global Network originated in the UK in 2018 by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The Chilean Plastics Pact (PCP) is led by Fundación Chile and the Ministry of the Environment, with the purpose of rethinking the future of plastics by encouraging a model that keeps the material in use and prevents it from ending up in the environment.
Based on a collaborative model, the PCP works collaboratively and articulated, focusing on all plastic containers and packaging placed in the Chilean market, generating collaboration and innovation to suggest new ways of manufacturing, using, reusing, and recycling plastics. To ensure the success of this initiative, all the actors in the value chain are called upon, as well as other relevant actors, that are part of the Chilean Plastics Ecosystem, achieving an active involvement of plastic producers, packaging producers, retailers, brands, civil society – through consumer associations – environmental NGOs, municipalities, waste management companies, valuaters, government entities, industrial and sectoral unions, and academia.
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