Subject: BFFP Newsletter: Plastic Free July, Fighting Plastic Bag Pollution in Europe, Reuse & Refill on the Rise, and more!

Uniting for a Just Recovery during Plastic Free July

As the world continues to grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic, people around the world are demonstrating that a life free from unnecessary plastic and disposable material is still possible. This year’s Plastic Free July continues paving the way to #BreakFreeFromPlastic while encouraging principles built on a just recovery from the pandemic.

Other News
Our Open Letter to the European Commission

More than 100 billion plastic bags were used in Europe in 2010 before a European Directive was adopted to limit their consumption.

While all countries have transposed the Directive, only some have taken ambitious action to cut plastic bag pollution at the source. A new report, by #breakfreefromplastic members Rethink Plastic and Surfrider Foundation Europe, shows what measures have been adopted at national levels.

Centre for Environmental Justice takes Sri Lankan government to court

#breakfreefromplastic member Centre for Environmental Justice (CEJAD) filed a case against the Sri Lankan government for failing to make regulations in minimizing or banning the use of single-use plastics in the country.

CEJAD’s Hemantha Withanage said: “...among other measures we seek is a Writ of Mandamus directing the Minister to make regulations to minimize or ban the use of single-use plastics in the country. We also push them to formulate policies, plans or strategies for the prevention of coastal and marine pollution and the discharge of waste to the ocean.

Waste Trade: Green Groups Denounce Europe's "Do As I Say, Not As I Do" Policy

The Basel Convention, an international treaty designed to reduce the movements of hazardous waste between nations, adopted the “Do As I Say, Not As I Do” Norwegian amendment in 2019 in order to regulate the export of end-of-life plastics.

Yet as it stands today, the European Commission does not intend to fully apply the Basel Convention waste amendments for shipments happening within its territory. This could lead to insufficiently regulated trade of potentially hazardous plastics across the European Union (EU). 

Two U.S. Campaigns to #BuildBackBetter during COVID-19

In the midst of the Covid-19 crisis, we’re rallying around the types of systems that can help us make a Just Recovery towards a healthier, more equitable future. Two campaigns in the U.S. are advancing this work: (1) asking local stores to bring back reusable and refillable systems, based on new scientific and public health evidence; and (2) telling food delivery companies to change their platforms so customers don’t automatically receive single-use items.

U.S. Law Enforcement: Harassing Community Members to Protect Formosa Plastics

#breakfreefromplastic changemakers Anne Rolfes and Kate McIntosh, both with the Louisiana Bucket Brigade, were recently charged under Louisiana’s felony “terrorizing” law. They now face up to fifteen years in jail for leaving a box of plastic pellets, found on the Texas coast, at the home of an oil and gas lobbyist. Both activists are safe, but the fight to #StopFormosaPlastics continues!

WATCH: Where do New Zealand’s plastic exports go?

Early last year, Indonesia sent five containers of contaminated plastics back to New Zealand at Indonesia’s cost. To shed light on this issue, #breakfreefromplastic changemaker Trisia Farrelly of the Centre for Political Ecology Research Centre, Massey University, organized a webinar to shed light on waste dumping in developing countries in Asia. 

Panelists representing #breakfreefromplastic members GAIA, Ecoton, Nexus3 Foundation, and Greenpeace Malaysia demonstrated what waste dumping looks like in Southeast Asia, and explained why pushing for Basel Convention amendments to include new regulations on plastics trading is so critical.  

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