Marine Plastic Pollution: How Global Extended Producer Responsibility Can Help

The Environmental Law Reporter, Issue 12

December 2020

Nearly nine million tons of plastic waste flow into our oceans each year, arriving in many ways—ranging from polluted rivers and waterways to the wastewater from our washing machines. Once in the ocean, this pervasive plastic pollution is nearly impossible to clean up. If there is anything positive to say about such a broad and complex challenge, it is that there are multiple ways to tackle the problem. Legal and policy solutions are increasingly moving away from the piecemeal, product-by-product approach of single-use plastic bans and toward more comprehensive frameworks and solutions. This Comment discusses one such approach to managing plastic waste in a more comprehensive and holistic manner, called extended producer responsibility.

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