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Plastics

The Global Environmental Governance Team (GEG) is conducting research to provide policy tools to further the discussion around the international management of plastics. GEG collaborates with governments and NGOs to develop the connection between plastics and academia, and as a part of Northeastern University, one of three UNEP-accredited institutions in the United States, is present and active in negotiations to establish a legally binding agreement on plastic pollution.

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World Wildlife Fund Plastic Policy Summit

The World Wildlife Fund hosted their second Plastic Policy Summit in Washington, D.C., from March 21 to 22, 2024, bringing together over 300 attendees from local, state, and federal organizations, NGOs, academia, and the private sector to discuss how best to forward national plastic policy.

 

Prof. Maria Ivanova and graduate student in Environmental Science and Policy, Alexandra Carlotto, of Northeastern University collaborated with Ph.D. candidate Taylor Maddalene of the University of Georgia to facilitate a workshop entitled ‘Mapping Capacity and Knowledge Gaps.’ Structured as an ‘I need, I have’ discourse, this workshop allowed participants to voice specific areas of knowledge and capacity in which they felt their organizations were lacking. It opened opportunities for other participants to fill those gaps by providing resources they knew of or could offer. 

Key takeaways from the session include how collaboration and expanding a knowledge network across sectors maximize research, resources, and capacity. The session opened up new insights on how universities can be used as testing grounds for reduction and reuse initiatives.

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Used Plastic Bottle on Beach

Plastics Policy Research

Alexandra Carlotto, the GEG team member, analyzes the reporting mechanisms in current multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) to propose a framework for reporting for the global plastics treaty. The proliferation of MEAs, limited technical and financial resources, and a lack of streamlining within the reporting process, drive reporting to be a challenge and a burden on nations, specifically small and developing states. Gaining a deeper understanding of the barriers against effective reporting caused by current systems is essential to understanding how best to structure national reporting within the plastics treaty so as not to hamper its effectiveness. 

If interested in additional information on reporting challenges and potential solutions please see, 

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