War on plastic pollution for World Environment Day

Greenpeace makes appeal to G7, Conte gov't pledges reduction

05 June, 20:26

    ROME - Some 150 million tonnes of plastic litter the seas across the world and 8 million more are added every year, largely as a result of the world's addiction to disposable and single-use goods. Plastic in the sea is such a serious threat that it is considered one of the most serious environmental emergencies in the world. The 2018 edition of World Environment Day, celebrated by the UN every June 5, is focusing on this issue with the slogan: ''Beat Plastic Pollution: If You Can't Reuse it, Refuse It''.
    The spotlight is on consumers' choices and their effect on reducing demand for products packaged in non-biodegradable material. If the present trend continues, plastic in the sea will weigh more than all marine animals combined, with most of the pollution originating in emerging nations in Asia, Africa and Latin America, which do not have appropriate systems to collect and treat it. But even in the Mediterranean, the situation is dire and there is not nearly enough recycling of waste. Greenpeace has called on the next G7 and multinational firms to place bans on disposable plastic and to set reduction goals. In Italy, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte told the Senate on Tuesday in a speech that ''we are not willing to sacrifice the environment and the plan for a blue economy for other ends''.
    Environment Minister Sergio Costa has meanwhile pledged to make his ministry ''plastic-free'' and plans to launch an ''economic and cultural strategy to begin reducing plastic production and excessive packaging''.

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