In January 2019, more than 30 companies, including leading plastic manufacturers, chemical firms, and multinational oil companies came together to form a non-profit organization called Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW). The newly formed alliance committed to launch a $1,5 billion initiative aimed at addressing the plastic waste problem that has been plaguing the environment.
More than 30 companies, mostly leaders in their respective industry such as Procter & Gamble, Chevron, Dow, Exxon Mobil,Mitsubishi Chemical, Formosa Plastics, Poly-One and Shell, all agree to lessen the impact of plastics on the environment by undertaking projects that would see to the collection of plastic wastes on a global scale and put them through better recycling practices.
The ultimate goal of the AEPW is to make plastic a valuable resource rather than an environmental nuisance.
Underscoring and Understanding the Value of Plastic
There is no denying that the use of plastics helped in improving hygiene, nutrition, health preservation, sanitation, as well as in adding convenience in several aspects of modern life. The problem with the introduction of plastics though was the lack of foresight on how the accumulation of non-biodegradable wastes in landfills and bodies of water would create adverse impacts on the environment.
Currently, there are calls to reduce and eventually, to end plastic wastes; but should be done with an understanding that there is also a need to maintain the critical benefits afforded by the use of plastic products. That being the case, approaches to plastic waste reduction must involve use of strategic and comprehensive recycling methods.
Alliance to End Plastic Waste to Sponsor Renew Oceans
Renew Oceans is a localized initiative, which the AEPW will sponsor by providing materials and logistics capabilities in preventing river-borne plastic wastes from flowing into ocean. The initiative aims to address the issue raised by environmental researchers in 2017, with regard to the 93% plastic wastes coming from 10 major rivers that subsequently flows to the ocean.
The first Renew Oceans project will focus on the Ganges River in India, using the biofence technology developed by Renewlogy. The method involves collecting and diverting plastic wastes flowing in rivers and tributaries, in order to prevent them from entering the ocean.
The project also involves participation by local communities and innovators in converting the diverted collection of plastic into usable materials.Part of the Renew Oceans project includes providing economic opportunities to the economically disadvantaged members of local communities, by allowing them to take part in the recycling aspects of the project