Rounding off a three-part series titled The plastics landscape, this report explores the various plastic-related regulations and policies at different stages of the value chain. It also looks at the types of movements that are influencing how plastic is regulated, managed and used. An overview of plastic legislations around the world is available via the interactive tool below.

Key findings:

  • Several countries, regions and cities have recently introduced regulations and legislations focused on plastic. These are primarily aimed at use and disposal to reduce consumption and improve waste management. Over 60 countries have implemented bans and levies on plastic packaging and single-use waste.
  • Although there are currently no policies or regulations that directly target the primary production of plastics, companies involved in producing raw materials for plastics (including oil and gas companies) may be affected indirectly through policies which aim to boost plastic recycling and reduce fossil fuel dependence and greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Policies and regulations focused on the disposal stage of the plastics value chain, such as China’s ban on imported waste, have significantly impacted global waste management systems and the secondary market. Shifting norms around plastic use are also being influenced by global civil society movements such as the BBC’s Blue Planet series and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy initiative.



About The plastics landscape series

This is the third report in a series aimed at equipping investors with the information they need to understand plastic as a systemic issue, providing a technical overview of plastic and the plastic market, and exploring common concepts.

The series will help investors to identify where and how their portfolios might be exposed to plastic, enabling them to analyse relevant sectors and engage at the corporate and policy levels accordingly.

The first report looked at the challenges and possible solutions, and the second looked at risks and opportunities along the plastics value chain.