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Reducing Plastic Pollution: Campaigns That Work

  • Published on March 15, 2021

This report examines the relevant literature on behaviour change, psychology and environmental issues to learn which strategies can be effective – and which might be counterproductive – when it comes to shifting people’s actions around plastic. From the review of scholarly articles, media reports and surveys of the public, emerges a number of recommendations that can be put to use by anyone creating a campaign concerned with plastic use.

The problems related to our reliance on plastic arewell known, ranging from particulate pollution to marine waste. This is why the One Planet Network has adopted plastics as its theme for 2020–2021, and the 4th UN Environment Assembly has passed Resolution 6 on marine litter and microplastics, calling on governments to deliver the “information tools and incentives to foster sustainable consumption and production.” Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) supports the One Planet Plastics Initiative, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and other partners to change the agenda on plastic use. We are also proud to be working closely with the Swedish Government on its move to a circular economy as part of Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development Goal 12. The aim is to radically alter patterns of consumption and production so that Sweden becomes the world’s first fossil-fuel free welfare state. The use of plastic will play
an important part in the strategy. This report exemplifies SEI’s approach to building the evidence base on plastic use, and bridging the gap between science and policy.

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