Information brief

IUCN WCEL Briefing 4 of 6 for Plastics Treaty INC-2 Just Transition and the Plastic Pollution Treaty

The Plastic Pollution Treaty’s scope, as articulated by United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) resolution 5/14, includes the circular economy and elements of the plastic life-cycle as vital elements for addressing plastic pollution and production. The fundamental connections between the circular economy, plastic life-cycle and global efforts to address plastic pollution were affirmed by States and stakeholders throughout the INC-1 discussions.

At the same time, a number of States and stakeholders expressly referenced the need to include just transition as part of the Plastic Pollution Treaty during INC-1. In the plastics context, the transition away from plastic production as well as plastic-intensive industries and the informal sector can be seen as essential yet also carries with it the potential to cause unemployment and poverty. Just transition could offer a bridge through which to address the immediate issues of job loss as well as underlying socio-economic barriers and achieve synergies with other treaty systems. This should be done by including just transition terms in the core measures of the Plastic Pollution Treaty, the governance system adopted for the Treaty, and the amendments, annexes or protocols adopted depending on the structural choice made for the Treaty. This is Briefing 4 of 6 for INC-2. 

For all six briefings for INC-2 in one document, they may be found here.

For the previous five Briefings for INC-1, they can be found in the WCEL resources here as well as in the Plastic and Other Pollution topic page here.