New £60m government fund to tackle global plastic pollution

New £60m government fund to tackle global plastic pollution

From the funding announced by May, £25 million ($35.8 million) will be used to help researchers investigate the issue of marine plastic from a scientific, economic and social perspective.

The Government pledged to match public donations to tackle plastic waste through the UK Aid Match up to a total of £5m.

New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Ghana have already joined the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance, convened by Vanuatu and the UK. It will also put £20 million to prevent plastic and other environmental pollution from manufacturing in developing countries.

To drive this forward, the Prime Minister has also announced a £61.4 million package of funding to boost global research and help countries across the Commonwealth stop plastic waste from entering the oceans in the first place.

Poor waste management is the single leading cause of plastics in the ocean, and improving waste infrastructure in developing countries will be a major focus of the CCOA, according to Downing Street.

Britain, which is co-chairing the event with Vanuatu, will ask Commonwealth nations to follow the UK's lead in banning microbeads and slashing the number of single use plastic bags.

The Prime Minister will warn that the threat to oceans is "one of the most significant environmental challenges facing the world today" and state that the Commonwealth is "uniquely placed" to build on the UK's "transformative action".

Outrage on plastic waste was triggered after the documentary Blue Planet II, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, highlighted the scale of the problem.

The federation added: "The BPF welcomes the opportunity to have a discussion about the right interventions to reduce plastic waste and as an industry are committed to adding our expertise to help work with other Commonwealth countries to reach effective solutions".

"We are joining forces with our Commonwealth partners, bringing together global expertise to stop plastics waste from entering oceans - and by matching pound-for-pound the United Kingdom public's passionate response to the issue, we can make our shared ambition for clean oceans a reality".

For example, the Department for International Development will fund pilot programmes in up to three Commonwealth developing countries to tackle waste from cities that often ends up in waterways.

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