Portugal: Pact for dealing with plastic waste achieves first year goals
The Portuguese Plastics Pact (PPP) initiative started a year ago with 55 adherents now has 97, achieving the proposed goals for the first year, according to the coordinator.
The PPP, which has the support of the Government, involves entities such as companies, industries, retail, brands, municipalities, universities, sector associations and waste management entities, and sets targets for 2025, one of them the guarantee that 100% of plastic packaging will then be reusable, recyclable or compostable.
In a report to the Lusa Agency for the first year of activity, the PPP’s coordinator, Pedro São Simão, explained that the goal set for 2020, which was to define a list of single-use plastics considered problematic or unnecessary, and define measures for their disposal, had been met.
“On December 30th we met that objective, an important milestone in the initiative and which shows the cohesion among the members of the PPP,” he said.
Pedro São Simão also considered positive the fact that the entities that are now part of the PPP are almost twice as many, which shows that companies and organisations, despite a year marked by other priorities stemming from Covid-19, “have never ceased to give importance to sustainability.
“The PPP has six active working groups and more than 20 meetings of these groups have been held, with an increasing number of participants, which demonstrates everyone’s interest in this issue,” with everyone coming together in the idea that the use of plastic, as until now, “was not the most correct,” said Pedro São Simão.
The PPP launched in September the first phase of an awareness campaign on plastic waste called “Let’s Reinvent Plastic”, with the second phase starting now and raising awareness of the need to reuse and recycle plastic, more important even, he said, “because recycling rates have fallen in the last three years.
The campaign, “in a positive spirit of thanking the consumer” for the options for sustainability, will be disseminated through social networks and “in-store” (supermarkets for example) and offers prizes for best practices in plastics reuse.
There will be three prizes of €200 each to be used for shopping for best photos on plastic reuse practices, with the competition running from today until the 25th.
And on the first anniversary day of the PPP a “Roadmap 2025” (available on the Pact’s official website) is also released, a strategy document to which all groups have collaborated, on how to achieve the proposed targets for 2025, with intermediate, short and medium term targets, and the necessary actions.
The 2025 targets include ensuring that 100% of plastic packaging is reusable, recyclable or compostable, that at least 70% of packaging is effectively recycled, or that on average 30% of recycled plastic is incorporated into new packaging.
“We are very confident that we will achieve the targets. There are members of the PPP who already incorporate more than 30% recycled plastic into new products”.
The PPP is coordinated by the Smart Waste Portugal Association and belongs to the global network of Plastic Pacts of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, which brings together similar initiatives from various countries in order to share experiences, knowledge and good practices. In 2020 the United States also joined the initiative.
Those in charge of the PPP point out that plastic “has contributed to the degradation and pollution of the environment, especially the oceans”.