The IPCC’s Synthesis Report for the Sixth Assessment Report was finalized in March 2023 during the Panel’s 58th Session on Climate Change, in Interlaken, Switzerland. The report brings in to sharp focus the losses and damages we are already experiencing and will continue into the future, hitting the most vulnerable people and ecosystems especially hard. It shows that taking the right action now could result in the transformational change essential for a sustainable, equitable world. According to scientists, there are multiple, feasible and effective options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to human-caused climate change, and they are available now.
There is virtually nowhere on Earth today that remains untouched by plastic and ecosystems are evolving to adapt to this new context. While plastics have revolutionized our modern world, new and often unforeseen effects of plastic and its production are continually being discovered. Plastics are entangled in multiple ecological and social crises, from the plasticization of the oceans to the embeddedness of plastics in political hierarchies.
The complexities surrounding the global plastic crisis require an interdisciplinary approach and the materialities of plastic demand new temporalities of thought and action. Plastic Legacies brings together scholars from the fields of marine biology, psychology, anthropology, environmental studies, Indigenous studies, and media studies to investigate and address the urgent socio-ecological challenges brought about by plastics. Contributors consider the unpredictable nature of plastics and weigh actionable solutions and mitigation processes against the ever-changing situation. Moving beyond policy changes, this volume offers a critique of neoliberal approaches to tackling the plastics crisis and explores how politics and communicative action are key to implementing social, cultural, and economic change.
Editors: Trisia Farrelly, Sy Taffel, Ian Shaw
Contributors: Sasha Adkins, Sven Bergmann, Stephanie Borrelle, Tridibesh Dey, Eva Giraud, Christina Gerhardt, John Holland, Deidre McKay, Laura McLauchlan, Mike Michael, Imogen Napper, Tina Ngata, Sabine Pahl, Padmapani L. Perez, Jennifer Provencher, Elyse Stanes, Johanne Tarpgaard, Richard Thompson, and Lei Xiaoyu.
Fossil fuels — coal, oil, and gas — lie at the heart of the crises we face, including public health, racial injustice, and climate change. This report synthesizes existing research and provides new analysis that finds that the fossil fuel industry contributes to public health harms that kill hundreds of thousands of people in the U.S. each year and disproportionately endanger Black, Brown, Indigenous, and low-income communities. President Joe Biden and the 117th Congress have a historic opportunity to improve public health, tackle the climate crisis, and confront systemic racism at the same time by phasing out fossil fuel production and use.
In this report by Greenpeace, the Gulf Coast Center for Law and Policy, and The Movement for Black lives, experts show how tackling this fossil fuel racism would go a long way to address our present overlapping crises and correct the injustices that historically targeted communities have faced. A fossil fuel phaseout — an immediate halt to new extraction and infrastructure build-out and managed wind-down of existing production that prioritizes the needs of affected workers and communities — is necessary to end fossil fuel racism and fully address the public health, racial injustice, and climate crises.
The Changing Markets Foundation has published 6 reports that together reveal the interconnections between fast-fashion, fossil fuels, plastics, injustice, and pollution. The reports include:
- Synthetics Anonymous 2.0: Fashion’s persistent plastic problem (December 2022)
- Dressed to Kill: Fashion brands’ hidden links to Russian oil in a time of war (November 2022)
- Licence to Greenwash: How certification schemes and voluntary initiatives are fuelling fossil fashion (March 2022)
- A New Look for the Fashion Industry: EU Textile Strategy and the Crucial Role of Extended Producer Responsibility (March 2022)
- Synthetics Anonymous: fashion brands’ addiction to fossil fuels (June 2021)
- Fossil fashion: the hidden reliance of fast fashion on fossil fuels (February 2022)
“Advanced recycling” is not a solution to plastic pollution and isn’t measuring up to industry promises. And by definition, “advanced recycling” is not really recycling at all. Instead, it’s a strategy for fossil fuel and plastic industries to continue delaying real action on plastics. Loopholes, Injustice, & the “Advanced Recycling” Myth Report shows how plastics and fossil fuel industry lobbyists — primarily the American Chemistry Council — work to pressure state legislators to pass laws containing loopholes enabling “advanced recycling,” and perpetuating plastic pollution and injustice.
The Planetary Boundary framework states there are nine different measurable thresholds that human civilization should not cross in order to maintain the health of global systems. These include climate change, biodiversity, and novel chemicals, of which plastic is one. This report finds that the global scale of plastic pollution is affecting ecosystem health worldwide and is exacerbating other planetary boundaries.