RESOLUTION ECO331

FORUM: ECOSOC

QUESTION OF: Measures to reduce non-biodegradable waste

SUBMITTED BY: Kenya

CO-SUBMITTERS:Australia, Botswana, Bolivia, Argentina, Germany, Nicaragua, United Kingdom.

STATUSApproved

THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL,

 

Acknowledging the harmful effects of non-biodegradable materials on the environment,

 

Recognizing that responsible consumption and production can help achieve economic growth,

 

Fully alarmed that over two billion people lack access to waste collection and over three billion people lack access to waste disposal,

 

Keeping in mind possible future waste and UNEP eco design manual countries should focus on dematerialization, reducing the total material and energy usage of any products and service reduction of waste and pollution,

 

Observing the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on waste management. Social distancing measures requiring people to stay at home increasing single-use products and panic buying thwarting plastic reduction efforts,

 

  1. Encourages all member states to work on improving the frameworks about recycling with the goal of making all packaging recyclable by 2025, and labeled to show whether it can be recycled or not by the methods of:
    1. regulating all packaging placed on the market to be sortable and recyclable unless there are strong practical and environmental reasons for it not to be
    2. labeling all packaging with meaningful consumer information to indicate whether it can or cannot be recycled
    3. creating educational websites and other more traditional media that will introduce what is recyclable and what is not, as well as featuring informative videos on how citizens can recycle in their households and how they should dispose of some materials such as electronics
    4. introducing laws that require single-use plastic bag to be charged;
  2. Further encourages businesses to alter their production manner by:
    1. starting a green movement by creating refilling stations for products such as water and shampoo bottles, which can be viable alternatives to packaged products and will:
      1. aim to turn disposable cleaning product packaging into reusable and less wasteful products
      2. reduce packaging waste without compromising the price or quality of liquid products
      3. help improve the brand of the manufacturer by drawing customers to the stores that provide refill option, hence improving their economic gain in the long term and adding refilling experience to their brand image
    2. improving product efficiency by reducing, reusing or recycling materials and components, which will:
      1. re-use parts of materials of an obsolete product
      2. recycle remaining materials
      3. reduce the material needed;
  3. Recommends that all member states improve their commitment to raising awareness on unsustainable consumption and promote Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 12 in ways such as:
    1. changing their government policies and create more sustainable strategies such as but not limited to:
      1. implementing online bill payment systems and e-governance with the aim of reducing unsustainable mobilization and decrease fuel consumption
      2. encouraging online shopping through incentives such as rebate and tax-cuts
    2. setting up specific goals and targets regarding sustainable consumption and production patterns, and make the strategies that will be implemented publicly available;
  4. Emphasizes the requirement of education to inform people about the issue at hand and learn how to properly manage waste by:
    1. educating and training all government employees on implementation strategies, guidelines and targets before employment about:
      1. factory waste
      2. chemical waste
      3. proper disposal of hazardous waste
    2. adjusting school curriculums to include sustainability and the implemented government strategies in the respective member state on sustainable consumption, production patterns and climate change
    3. working with local Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) to raise awareness among people by using media, especially television, radio and newspapers and educate individuals and their households to be informed about their waste management responsibility regarding segregation, recycling, reducing, re-using, littering, illegal dumping and open burning;
  5. Urges all member states to hold companies accountable for their use of non biodegradable materials and educate companies on the use of sustainable practices by means such as but not limited to;
    1. encouraging all restaurants to use straw-less lids or paper straws in place of plastic straws that are not biodegradable and pollute the environment
    2. recommending that restaurants and grocery stores redistribute unsold or excess food
    3. including a no-service option in which the restaurant does not deliver plastic silverware such as spoons, forks, and knives in their orders
    4. aiming to make all packaging worldwide reusable or recyclable by 2030;
  6. Suggests market research for developing biodegradable and environmentally friendly products such as protective gear including face masks, gloves, overalls, among others to achieve sustainable production and consumption as well as reduce environmental costs as a response to the increased demand of such equipment due to the COVID-19 pandemic;
  7. Asks member nations to reform and re-direct energy subsidies by means such as but not limited to:
    1. gradually reducing subsidies for conventional fossil fuels
    2. redirecting the aforementioned subsidies to de-centralised renewable energy systems to enable energy diversification in LEDCs.