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Mr. Sukkar’s intervention analysed the role held by the circular economy principles in supporting sustainable urban development in emerging economies, with particular emphasis on the current level of infrastructure existent in emerging markets. The robustness of driving forward the founding ideals of a circular economy is dependent on the contextual realities of waste – often, in developing economies, a less than adequate waste collection, treatment and disposal can have a significant economic impact on the local societies and their development, Averda having observed this trend in the emerging markets it operates in.
Less known by the Governments in emerging economies is the fact that plastics production, use and disposal has significant drawbacks: $80-120 billion plastic packaging material value is lost each year and it is estimated that, by 2050, the oceans will contain more plastics than fish. These were the findings of a new report released by the World Economic Forum and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation in Davos last week. The Report entitled The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics is part of Project MainStream – the first vision of a global economy in which plastics never become waste.
Averda was paramount in the elaboration of this report given that Project MainStream is a multi-industry, global initiative launched in 2014 and led by the chief executive officers of nine global companies, Averda’s Malek Sukkar being one of them. Mentioning “The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics” in his World Economic Forum panel intervention, Averda’s Chief Executive Officer underlined the fact that the report’s stark findings focus on systemic stalemates in global material flows that are too big or too complex for an individual business, city or government to overcome alone, as well as on enablers of the circular economy such as digital technologies.
Mr. Sukkar said: “Achieving the systemic change needed to shift the global plastic value chain will require major collaboration efforts between all stakeholders across the global plastics value chain – consumer goods companies, plastic packaging producers and plastics manufacturers, businesses involved in collection, sorting and reprocessing, cities, policymakers and Non-Governmental organisations.
If our economic development and resource consumption continue in the current rhythm, by 2050 plastics will represent 20% of world’s oil consumption and 15% of the global annual carbon budget. Being one of founding members of Project MainStream, Averda has contributed to setting a sustainable vision of the New Plastics Economy, one where plastics never become waste - rather, they re-enter the economy as valuable technical or biological nutrients.”