Plastic Pollution Battle at Risk: Seven Clean Seas Exposes UN Process Flaws

The Integrity of the United Nations’ Fight Against Plastic Pollution Called into Question Amidst Lobbyist Dominance

2 mins read

Key Takeaways:

  1. Concern Over Lobbyist Influence: Seven Clean Seas raises alarms about the overwhelming presence of fossil fuel and petrochemical lobbyists at the UN’s INC-3 meeting, outnumbering scientific and environmental representatives.
  2. Critical Role of Corporate Disclosure: Seven Clean Seas advocates for full corporate disclosure in combating plastic pollution, developing a comprehensive three-scope system for corporate plastic footprinting.
  3. Mission to Combat Ocean Plastic Pollution: Seven Clean Seas aims to recover 10 million kilograms of ocean plastic by 2025, combining environmental impact with social responsibility.

Introduction: A Contested Battle Against Plastic Pollution

Seven Clean Seas’ Stand on UN’s Handling of the Crisis

In a bold critique, Seven Clean Seas, a British environmental organization, has voiced significant concerns over the integrity of the United Nations’ process in addressing the global plastic pollution crisis, specifically during the recent INC-3 meeting.

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The INC-3 Meeting: A Lobbyist Dominated Arena

Overpowering Presence of Fossil Fuel and Petrochemical Lobbyists

Outnumbering Scientists and Vulnerable States’ Representatives

At the third session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC-3), aimed at forging a legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, the dominance of 43 fossil fuel and petrochemical lobbyists raised major red flags for Seven Clean Seas. Their presence surpassed the representation of scientists and small island states, leading to concerns about the UN Environment Programme’s (UNEP) approach to the plastic pollution crisis.


Seven Clean Seas’ Advocacy for Corporate Disclosure

Developing a Plastic Footprint Protocol

Mirroring the Greenhouse Gas Protocol for Plastics

Seven Clean Seas, alongside industry partners, has been instrumental in developing a plastic stewardship program akin to the Greenhouse Gas Protocol. This initiative focuses on corporate plastic footprinting, offering a transparent and fair approach to tackling plastic pollution.

Collaboration and Comprehensive Strategies

A Collective Effort for Environmental Impact

The organization’s collaboration with partners such as Ampliphi, Anthesis, and South Pole has resulted in a robust framework. This collaboration underscores the necessity of a unified approach in addressing the plastic crisis.


Seven Clean Seas’ Mission and Impact

Aiming to Recover 10 Million Kilograms of Ocean Plastic

Blending Environmental and Social Impact

Seven Clean Seas is not only committed to significant environmental recovery but also focuses on creating positive social impacts. Their projects emphasize formal employment, fair wages, and safe working conditions, setting new standards in waste management in Asia.


The Road Ahead: INC-4 Meeting and Beyond

Preparing for Future Negotiations

The Need for Stronger Environmental Representation

As the world gears up for the INC-4 meeting in Ottawa, Canada, Seven Clean Seas underscores the importance of balanced representation and corporate accountability. Their advocacy highlights the need for a more equitable approach in future negotiations to effectively combat plastic pollution.

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Conclusion: A Call for Integrity and Action

In conclusion, Seven Clean Seas’ critique of the recent INC-3 meeting serves as a wake-up call to the international community. It underscores the urgency for a more balanced and transparent approach in combating plastic pollution. As we move forward, the need for strong environmental advocacy and corporate responsibility becomes ever more critical in preserving our oceans and planet.


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