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Delegates converge in Kenya to discuss global plastic pollution treaty

GOOBJOOG NEWS | NAIROBI: Government delegations are gathering in Nairobi, Kenya to thrash out details of what is seen as the first global treaty to tackle plastic pollution.

The main focus of the discussion scheduled for Monday will be to determine whether targets to restrict plastic production should be decided unilaterally or whether states should choose their own targets.

During the previous round of negotiations held in Paris, France in May, some countries including; USA, Saudi Arabia, India and China supported the “Paris-Style” agreement where states would have the freedom to determine their own commitments, while others, including Africa and many developing countries, preferred strong global commitments.

On Saturday, hundreds of environmental campaigners marched in the Kenyan capital on demanding drastic curbs on plastic production.

“There is a lot of talk about end of pipeline solutions which we do not need right now. Investing in more of them divert the focus away from what we really need to do, which is mandating ambitious targets on plastics reduction,” said Tiara Samson an associate of Break Free from Plastic, which organised the march.

Marchers called for the talks to focus on cutting the amount of plastic produced and waved placards reading “Plastic crisis = climate crisis” and “End multigenerational toxic exposure”.

“We are the people who have the historical knowledge and also the historical depth of controlling plastic pollution. We are at the heart of recycling and I believe that our input, our voices should set base to this treaty,” said John Chweya, president of the Kenya National Waste Pickers Welfare Association.

Global production has more than doubled since the start of the century, but less than 10 per cent of plastic waste is currently recycled.