21 Jan 2019 - Personal care brand Procter & Gamble has joined forces with several major companies to launch a new organisation to tackle plastic waste levels in the ocean.
The conglomerate, which owns brands such as Olay, Herbal Essences and Gillette, has co-founded the ‘Alliance to End Plastic Waste’ (AEPW) alongside dozens of other global member companies, such as ExxonMobil, Shell and Total.
The non-profit alliance has pledged to donate over US$1 billion in order to invest US$1.5 billion over the next five years to help eliminate plastic waste in the environment. It aims to achieve this by developing solutions to minimise and manage plastic waste, focus on used plastics and enable a circular economy.
“Everyone agrees that plastic waste does not belong in our oceans or anywhere in the environment,“ said David Taylor, Chairman of the Board, President and CEO of Procter & Gamble, and chairman of the AEPW. “This new alliance is the most comprehensive effort to date to end plastic waste in the environment.”
The alliance’s projects will include partnering with cities all over the world to design integrated waste management systems where infrastructure is lacking, focusing on data collection by developing an open source, science-based global information project to aid global waste management projects globally, and supporting the environmental program Renew Oceans, which aims to capture plastic waste before it reaches the sea. The group will also make additional investments and drive progress in the areas of infrastructure development, technological innovation, education and engagement and the cleaning up of concentrated areas of plastic waste, such as rivers.
Sustainability has become a major focus of the beauty industry over the past few years, as consumers become increasingly aware of the environmental footprint of their personal care purchases. Several brands have launched initiatives to address the issue; Clarins, Coty, L’Oréal and Groupe Rocher hit the headlines in late 2017 when they committed to a ‘Responsible Beauty Initiative’ designed to encourage sustainability within the beauty industry by improving ethical, social and environmental performance and progress throughout the industry’s supply chains.