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Turning the tide on the pandemic’s plastic waste in support of Sustainable Development Goal No. 12
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  • Turning the tide on the pandemic’s plastic waste in support of Sustainable Development Goal No. 12
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这是a的第五篇文章 系列 of stories on the work Wood is doing in partnership with the United Nations, 非政府组织, the private sector and governments to support the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Face masks are one of the most defining symbols of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, this iconic sign of our times is exacerbating another crisis: plastic pollution.

在全球范围内, 1290亿个口罩 – mostly single-use masks made from plastic microfibers – are used every month as a preventive measure to stop the spread of the virus. 然而,, the improper disposal of face masks coupled with ineffective waste management is leading to rising levels of marine debris. A growing number of discarded masks have washed up on the coasts of Hong Kong, 法国和英国.

2020年2月, OceansAsia, 香港海洋保护组织, discovered dozens of masks on the shoreline of the Soko Islands. 在英国 海洋保护协会 found personal protective equipment (PPE) items on nearly 25% of beaches. 去年6月,法国 两倍的罚款 for littering after photos of surgical masks and latex gloves in the Mediterranean seabed near Antibes surfaced on social media. OceansAsia估计 更多的 than a billion masks entered the world’s oceans in 2020 alone – threatening marine life and critical ecosystems.

PPE is not the only form of pandemic-generated waste. Lockdowns and health concerns prompted by the outbreak have triggered the increased demand and production of disposable plastic. 以减少病毒传播的机会, many restaurants and retailers have temporarily prohibited reusable products, becoming 更多的 reliant on single-use plastic bags and food containers. 最近的一次 调查 of consumers in 23 countries showed increases of 43% in food waste and 53% in plastic packaging since the start of the pandemic.

The rapid surge in single-use plastics caused several nations to push back on efforts to ban its production which is expected to increase by 40% over the next decade. 在英国 launch of a national deposit return system for plastic bottles had to be postponed from its initial start date of April 2020 to July 2022.

与联合国的第1号可持续发展目标保持一致. 12 to ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns, the European Union (EU) has been fighting for years to ban single-use plastic items to protect the environment, reduce risks to human health and create a 更多的 sustainable future. 2021年7月3日 一次性塑料指令 在欧盟生效, 禁止特殊产品,如车牌, 吸管, 餐具, 棉花花蕾, 气球棒, food and beverage containers made of expanded polystyrene and all items composed of oxo-degradable plastic from being placed on the market.

Wood partnered with several other organisations to support the European Commission in the implementation of the directive, playing a role in developing key guidelines and driving extensive engagement with stakeholder groups from across the plastics value chain in Europe and Member States. 在过去的几年里, we have also advised government institutions and helped private and public sector organisations to design and evaluate government policy to minimise plastic pollution, 跨价值链管理物料输入, 减少浪费及其影响, 优化资源效率, 探索循环经济中的机遇.

Decreasing the production of plastics and improving solid waste management is crucial to realising a net-zero future. Created from fossil fuels, the refinement of plastic emits an additional 1.84亿至2.13亿 每年产生公吨的温室气体. 通过政策评估, 塑料生产的标准和指南, 通过循环的方法使用和回收, Wood is enabling 更多的 resilient environments and unlocking solutions to cut carbon emissions.

点击 在这里 加入我们的会议 Collaborating with the UN to Achieve a Sustainable Future at the Wood House during COP26 on Monday, November 8 from 9 am to 2 pm BST.

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