Strong Nordic support to the global treaty on plastic

19.09.23 | News
Brian Yurasits/unsplash
Brian Yurasits/Unsplash
New report launched today during Climate Week NYC shows globally coordinated policies could cut annual mismanaged plastics by 90%. The report is intended to support and inform the ongoing negotiations for aninternational, legally binding instrument to end plastic pollution by 2040.

"Plastic pollution is everywhere. Without new and effective control measures, mismanaged plastics is set to double in 20 years. We now have a window of opportunity to develop an effective plastic treaty by the end of 2024. Let's work together to reduce production and consumption of plastics, enable a safe circular economy and end plastic pollution by 2040 to protect human health and the environment, Norway's Minister of Climate and Environment," Espen Barth Eide, says. 


Today the Nordic Region take yet another step in their efforts to support an ambitious global agreement on plastics with the launch of the report Towards Ending Plastic Pollution by 2040: 15 Global Policy Interventions for Systems Change’. The analysis show how concerted and common global actions can end plastic pollution by 2040.

Urgency of globally binding rules

"An ambitious, global, legally binding instrument to end plastic pollution will be a vital tool for countries to beat the scourge of plastic pollution once and for all. And delivering on this ambition means reducing the amount of plastic produced; redesigning products to eliminate so-called “mindless” plastic, i.e. short-lived plastic; switching to non-plastic substitutes and strengthening waste management systems. This is the least we can do for future generations that will inhabit our one and only planet," says Director General of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), Inger Andersen. 


The report underlines the urgency of comprehensive globally binding rules in the upcoming international treaty on ending plastic pollution and point to the fact that further and stronger measures are needed to fully end all aspects of plastic pollution and align the plastic system with the Paris Climate Agreement. The report also warns of escalating plastic pollution if transformative global policies are not implemented.  

Combating plastic waste on a global scale

"The report we launch today is a clear sign of what we can achieve when working together on the shared ambitions. I’m proud of the constructive and driving role the Nordic cooperation is playing in the work to combat plastic waste on a global scale, Secretary General to the Nordic Council of Ministers, Karen Ellemann," says.


The report Was commissioned by the Nordic Council of Ministers for the Environment and Climate and developed by Systemiq.

Knowledge base for negotiations

In the past years the Nordic countries have long worked actively to safeguard a legally binding global agreement for plastic waste in the oceans by, among other things, ensuring a solid knowledge base for negotiations through the reports “International sustainability criteria for plastic products in a global agreement on plastic pollution” and “Possible elements of a new global agreement to prevent plastic pollution”. 

Nordic ambitions on plastics

On two previous occasions, the Nordic environment and climate ministers have signed ministerial declarations clarifying shared Nordic ambitions for the area of plastics. 


“Nordic Ministerial Declaration on a global agreement on plastic pollution and ambitions for UNEA 5.2”, signed in 2021, and “Nordic Ministerial Declaration on the need for a new global agreement to prevent marine plastic litter”, signed in 2020.