Business giants commit $1bn to launch Alliance to End Plastic Waste

Major companies from across the plastics value chain, including Procter & Gamble (P&G), Veolia and ExxonMobil, have today (16 January) committed more than $1bn (£777m) as part of a new alliance aimed at eliminating plastic waste in the environment.

Business giants commit $1bn to launch Alliance to End Plastic Waste

The Alliance will focus heavily on the prevention and clean up of plastics in rivers and oceans

The Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW) has launched today, consisting of 26 companies representing chemical and plastic manufacturers, consumer goods firms, retailers and manufacturers across the plastics value chain.

AEPW will use the $1bn in committed funding to scale solutions that minimise the amount of plastic in the environment by utilising closed-loop solutions. AEPW has set a goal of investing $1.5bn over the next five years.

The Alliance membership represents global companies and located throughout North and South America, Europe, Asia, Southeast Asia, Africa, and the Middle East and will focus heavily on the prevention and clean up of plastics in rivers and oceans.

The first Alliance members are: BASF, Berry Global, Braskem, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC, Clariant, Covestro, Dow, DSM, ExxonMobil, Formosa Plastics Corporation, U.S.A., Henkel, LyondellBasell, Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings, Mitsui Chemicals, NOVA Chemicals, OxyChem, PolyOne, P&G, Reliance Industries, SABIC, Sasol, SUEZ, Shell, SCG Chemicals, Sumitomo Chemical, Total, Veolia, and Versalis (Eni).

Commenting on the launch, P&G’s chief executive David Taylor said: “Everyone agrees that plastic waste does not belong in our oceans or anywhere in the environment.

“This is a complex and serious global challenge that calls for swift action and strong leadership. This new alliance is the most comprehensive effort to date to end plastic waste in the environment. I urge all companies, big and small and from all regions and sectors, to join us.”

To kickstart progress, AEPW has announced a range of new projects to focus on over the coming months. Business members will partner with cities to design integrated waste management systems in areas where infrastructure is lacking. The Alliance will also work with other city-focused programmes such as  Project STOP, a business-led initiative aiming to prevent plastic pollution from leaking into waterways and oceans across South-East Asia.

AEPW will provide funding to The Incubator Network by Circulate Capital to develop technologies and business models that prevent ocean plastic waste. It will also create an open source, science-based global information project to assist waste management projects across the globe.

Representatives from 2,000 companies across the globe tuned in to watch the launch of the Alliance and were provided with information on how their organisations can join the initiative. 

“Never before has such a large number of companies from across the whole value chain come together on this issue – the Alliance is unprecedented in terms of size, scope, position in the sector and geographic spread,” World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) chairman Peter Bakker said at the launch event. 

“No company can solve this alone. Consumer demand will change quickly, demanding solutions, as regulators look at the issue more closely.

“But we can’t solve the issue by just adding more companies. We need to create an infrastructure to share solutions and transfer them across the world quickly, partnering with cities and governments to put them into action. “

edie’s Plastics Hub

The launch of the Alliance comes at a time of renewed focus on the global plastics crisis. While companies such as Nestlé have announced new commitments to plastic packaging, more than 30 major companies have reaffirmed their commitment to reaching plastic commitments by pledging to edie’s Plastics Hub.

The new Hub, which is inspired by edie’s ongoing Mission Possible campaign, will host content that supports businesses with their single-use plastics phase-outs and encourages sustainability professionals to submit new commitments to tackle plastic pollution on the Mission Possible Pledge Wall.


Matt Mace

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