Plastic waste constitutes between 60% and 80% of marine debris and is “one of the world’s most pervasive pollution problems impacting our oceans and waterways,” according to the U.N. Over the past 60 years, plastics production and waste have dramatically increased.

From raw material extraction through to plastic polluting the ocean, plastics represent the failure of a predominantly fossil fuel based, linear economic system. A problem this complex and embedded in our societies and economies requires solutions that address the cross-sector nature of the problem and are built upon sustainable, socially, and environmentally just frameworks that deliver permanent solutions and the deep changes we need.

GAIA is proud to be a founding member of the #BreakFreeFromPlastic movement which includes hundreds of organizations worldwide committed to a world free of plastic pollution. As a movement, we believe in holistic solutions that address the root cause of plastic pollution and work to reduce it first and foremost. We believe that all solutions should sustain the health of people and the planet and include community involvement and worker rights.

As a movement, we assert that as part of our pathway to world free of plastic pollution, no new incinerators should be constructed, and renewable energy incentives should be eliminated for plastics and waste burning. This includes gasification, pyrolysis, cement kilns, and other burn “waste-to-energy” facilities. These are false solutions that take us backward in our work for healthy oceans and people.

Check out GAIA staff member Anne Larracas’ words on the kinds of solutions we are building for plastic pollution —and the necessity of the global south as leaders in the solutions, and our factsheet on why incineration, gasification, pyrolysis, and plasma arc are NOT solutions for plastic pollution.

News and Current Campaigns

Community action defeats waste burning in cement k... BREAKING: Small community stands up to world’s largest cement company, wins Goldman Environmental Prize Thanks to Uroš S. Macerl and Eko krog, the...
Press release: Slovenian community stands up to th... Press Contacts: Europe: Mariel Vilella, Zero Waste Europe and GAIA, +44 7847 079154 United States: Antonia Bruno, GAIA, +1 510 859-4730 Today, on...
Oppose California AB 655: no RPS for burning waste April 2017: California Assembly Bill 655 (AB 655) would allow the state's waste incinerators to qualify as renewable energy, giving these polluting fa...
La planta de incineración en el Bordo Poniente emp... (Ciudad de México, a 19 de abril de 2017).- La Agencia de Gestión Urbana de la Ciudad de México, a través de su titular Jaime Slomianski Aguilar, dio ...