New Delhi: Hollywood legend Pierce Brosnan has launched a video appeal drawing attention to plastic’s long lifespan and the need to manage its disposal in environmentally sound ways.
In the video Brosnan, star of James Bond, Mama Mia and the upcoming Black Adam, highlights the work of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions, a series of international agreements designed to protect people and the environment from pollution.
“Elements of plastic in the things we use, what we eat, even in the air we breathe, can stay around forever,” noted Brosnan in the video, released on 22 June.
The video is part of a bigger campaign titled Plastic is Forever… so it’s time to get clever about managing it! The push is designed to promote the environmentally sound management of plastic waste, millions of tonnes of which flow into the environment annually.
“Our campaign slogan was born out of the need to show that not all is bleak when it comes to global environmental governance,” said Rolph Payet, Executive Secretary of the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Secretariat. “We want to raise awareness of the need to manage plastic waste in a fun, engaging way that is accessible to people across the world.”
In the video, Brosnan is joined by his son, Paris, who is also an actor, photographer and environmental activist.
The Brosnans are not the only celebrities raising awareness around the Plastic is Forever campaign. Tennis player Dominic Thiem has also released a video on social media supporting the campaign. “Together we can change how we live in the world,” said Thiem while urging his fans to be more mindful of plastic waste.
According to UNEP, “Every minute the equivalent of a garbage truck of plastic is dumped into the ocean, and 83 per cent of tap water and 90 per cent of bottled water has been found to contain plastic. In 2020, plastic was detected in human placentas.
“The campaign highlights the almost infinite life cycle of plastic. A plastic bottle, for example, will take up to 450 years to decompose,” said Payet.
“Even when it has decomposed it presents an environmental hazard as microplastics and nano plastics remain and get into our ecosystems and food supplies. There is an urgent need to better manage plastic waste.”
The Basel Convention was the first international treaty to provide for stricter controls in the transboundary movement of plastics. It will inform the implementation of the historic resolution to end plastic pollution and forge an international legally binding agreement by 2024, which was adopted during the fifth session of the United Nations Assembly earlier this year.
From 8 to 10 June the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Conventions held the Plastics Forum. It included more than 20 side events, which were streamed on a 3D virtual platform.
Some of the organizations involved were the United Nations Environment Programme, the Food and Agriculture Organization, the Government of Norway, the World Health Organization, the United Nations Development Programme, the European Investigation Agency and the International Pollutants Elimination Network.
In March 2022, Heads of State, Ministers of environment and other representatives from UN Member States endorsed a historic resolution at the UN Environment Assembly in Nairobi to end Plastic Pollution and forge an international legally binding agreement by 2024.
The resolution addresses the full lifecycle of plastic, including its production, design and disposal.
According to UN, Plastic production soared from 2 million tonnes in 1950 to 348 million tonnes in 2017, becoming a global industry valued at US$522.6 billion, and it is expected to double in capacity by 2040.
By 2050 greenhouse gas emissions associated with plastic production, use and disposal would account for 15 per cent of allowed emissions, under the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5°C
More than 800 marine and coastal species are affected by this pollution through ingestion, entanglement, and other dangers and some 11 million tonnes of plastic waste flow annually into oceans. This may triple by 2040.