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Clean Oceans Starts with Changing What We Do on Land

Updated: Feb 11, 2021

To reduce marine plastic pollution, we must address the source of the problem. That’s why CLOCC works to improve waste management on land in countries where significant quantities of waste end up in the oceans.

The marine environment is flooded with plastics. Each year 8-13 million metric tonnes of plastic end up in the oceans. In a business as usual scenario 29 million metric tonnes will reach the oceans by 2040, according to research by SYSTEMIQ and The Pew Charitable Trust.

Only 9% of plastic gets recycled, irrespective of an increasing amount of plastic produced worldwide. Unfortunately, the remaining plastic fraction ends up in dumpsites, landfills, or is openly burned. As such, large quantities reach the ocean through rivers and waterways.

In many emerging economies, including Indonesia, where CLOCC is currently focusing its efforts, waste management infrastructure has been left out due to other pressing concerns. While waste generation increases alongside population growth and development, waste management systems often lack capacity to handle the growing amount of waste. The challenge is evident; approximately 80% of all marine littering comes from land-based sources.

How can we best stop this unfortunate side effect that many growing economies are facing?

CLOCC’s solution is to address plastic pollution on the system level. If there are no changes to the system on land, plastic waste will continue to reach the oceans. We can clean it up, but the leakage will persist. Therefore, CLOCC works to turn off the tap on waste.

The CLOCC team cooperates with and contributes to building capacity of local waste management authorities in communities in countries that serve as significant sources of marine plastic pollution. CLOCC delivers training and mentoring through its pool of local and international waste management experts and practitioners.

A key part of CLOCC is to support the development of local waste management plans. The end goal for each region is comprehensive and integrated waste management plans that can be implemented efficiently with impactful results.

The core of CLOCC is working locally to minimize plastic pollution globally. Together with communities the team works towards sustainable solutions in waste management. The programme uses a grassroots approach, based on the belief that fundamental and integral change must be created within the communities. Therefore, CLOCC integrates all relevant stakeholders in order to ensure that the process and results are inclusive and sustainable.

We, the CLOCC team, believe that through changing what we do on land, we can achieve our vision of healthy societies and a clean environment; through creating sustainable communities, green jobs, and business opportunities in local circular economies.

We believe that this is the most sustainable way of reducing marine plastic pollution.

CLOCC is owned by Avfall Norge, with ISWA (International Solid Waste Association) as the main implementing partner.

Want to learn more about CLOCC? Get in touch!

Photo by Timothy Bouldry


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