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Addressing Pollution from Single-Use Plastic Products: A Life Cycle Approach - Key Messages for Tourism Businesses

  • Published on November 24, 2021

Authors: UNEP, UNWTO and Ellen MacArthur Foundation


This document summarises, from the perspective of the tourism sector, the key findings of the Life Cycle Initiative’s report series and summary report.

It aims to educate tourism stakeholders and provide evidence-based guidance for decision-making to address pollution from single- use plastic products. Key messages and recommendations are presented for the following single-use plastic products: bottles, cups, bags, take-away food packaging and tableware. These key messages and recommendations are also relevant for other single-use plastic products commonly used in the tourism sector, such as single-use toiletries and straws—the main problem is their single-use nature and the impacts resulting from it, more than the material they are made of.

The content is relevant for the achievement of the objectives of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative. It supports the elimination of unnecessary and problematic plastic products; highlights the role of reuse models to eliminate the use of unnecessary and problematic plastic items; it outlines areas in which engagement throughout the value chain is required to spur innovation; and reinforces the need for context-based approaches to ensure plastic is circulated back into the economy through recycling and material recovery.


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