As 175 countries prepare to gather in May to move ahead on a global plastics treaty, the world’s plastic-producing and plastic-polluted countries remain divided on whether the agreement should be mandatory or voluntary, among many other issues.
175 nations have unanimously agreed to a landmark UN framework to fight global plastic pollution. Though this is a huge environmental win, the devil is in the details to be hammered out over the next two years.
A February U.N. meeting will address the urgent need for a treaty to control plastics pollution, but whether the forthcoming draft agreement will regulate global plastics supply chains from cradle to grave, or be limited to protecting oceans, is unknown.
The United Nations Basel Convention regulates international transport of hazardous waste, which in 2021 expanded to include plastics. But the U.S. has never fully implemented the agreement; Biden may change that.
The Sumatran rhinoceros — the smallest, hairiest and most endangered of all rhino species — is today only found in Indonesia. But for a quarter century, the remaining few have…