Yes, you read that headline correctly. A global alliance of major companies to end plastic waste was recently formed, as we mentioned last week. However, as news outlets, like Fortune, have reported this week, many of its members are actually invested in plastic production. Fortune shares more:
The alliance includes Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, Dow Chemical, ExxonMobil, Formosa Plastics Corporation, Procter & Gamble, Reliance Industries, and Shell, among other oil, chemical, and waste management companies. The companies have pledged to dedicate a combined total of $1 billion over the next five years (or $1.5 billion if they can attract more members) to research to develop better recycling techniques and cleanup efforts.
According to the European NGO Recycling Network, however, the companies who have signed on to the effort are the same ones that are ensuring the continuation of plastic pollution by investing in the expansion of plastic production. The director of Recycling Network, Rob Buurman, told The Guardian that new cleanups and recycling efforts would be ineffectual in the absence of serious efforts to cut off the stream of new plastics being produced.
Read more on Fortune.
While most would agree that solutions are needed for pollution, this certainly raises questions if the companies combating pollution are the very ones who also share responsibility for it.
Meanwhile, read more of the latest major conservation news below.
- A move by China puts U.S. small-town recycling programs in the dumps (The Washington Post)
- Colorado State Forest Service: Study shows our forests are in trouble from beetle kill (Denver7)
- Air pollution affects happiness not just health, scientists find (The Telegraph)
- Climate-Change Denier President Donald Trump Has Rolled Back Numerous Envirionmental Regulations During First Two Years In Office (Newsweek)
- To curb climate change, we have to suck carbon from the sky. But how? (National Geographic)