Ocean Plastic & China’s Affluence, Markets for Sustainability & Leadership | #AskTheCollective 002

As we wrap up the start of February, we are proud to present Episode 002 of the #AskTheCollective video series. This episode features topics ranging from ocean plastic and the influence of affluence in China, to the link between sustainability and a market-driven economy. Many thanks to askers: Wade Sewell, allaways coffee, and Mario Van Der Meulen. As always, we hope you find these questions a…

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China’s Plastic Waste Epidemic: What You Need to Know

The world produces approximately 300 million tons of plastics each year, and that number is only increasing. Furthermore, 22% to 43% of the plastic used worldwide is disposed of in landfills, according to the United Nations Environmental Program. With the rise in popularity of online ordering and takeaway or delivery services, the future of China's plastic waste — from consumption to disp…

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Rebranding Waste: Refuse is a Resource

Smelly. Useless. Truck. Bin Man. Trash. Annoying. These are all words that popped into people’s heads when asked what they first thought upon hearing the word "waste". A quick Google search reveals other phrases like “worthless”, “no purpose”, “no longer useful or required”, “the unusable remains”. While I don't deny the legitimacy of the definition, it is striking to me how many items and pr…

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5 Key Actions to Engaging Local Stakeholders

On Wednesday I attended Plasticity forum in Shanghai, an event hosted by Doug Woodring that focuses on the plastics industry bringing together professional, experts and stakeholders from around the globe to promote and discuss the future of plastics and its progressive management. Despite a host of interesting talks I wanted to share with you the theme of a conversation that I had with the seni…

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China’s Growing Consumer Waste Challenge

High material use and consumption is synonymous with the development of an economy, particularly an evolving one such as China, which over the last 20 years has focused heavily on the primary and secondary industries to drive growth. However, China’s economy is now changing from one of heavy industry to one that is looking to meet the wants of its ever-increasing domestic consumers. But what ha…

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Failed Systems Create Waste

While shopping at my local grocery store this week, I was confronted by a member of TESCO's staff who would not accept naked fruit. Everything had to be bagged to be weighed. When I mentioned the fact that he wasn't thinking about the environment, he said "only foreigners care about the environment". It was one of many failed systems. One that Ray Anderson, former CEO of Interface flooring,…

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