PPC Webinar – Washed Up: The Invisible Threat of Plastic Microfibers

January 12 , 5:00 pm 6:00 pm EST

PPC Webinar - Washed Up: The Invisible Threat of Microfibers

Over 60% of clothing sold worldwide contains plastic—in the forms of polyester, acrylic, nylon, spandex, and more. Through regular washing and wearing, synthetic clothing sheds tiny plastic particles called “microfibers.” A single load of laundry can release over 9 million microfibers into our waterways. Many microfibers are so small they cannot be filtered by wastewater treatment facilities and ultimately end up in our oceans.

In our first webinar of 2023, we will explore how the ubiquitous nature of synthetic textiles is causing a massive and largely invisible plastic pollution problem. We will be joined by Meli Hinostroza, Co-Founder, Aya Eco Fashion & Arms of Andes; Dr. Andrej Kržan, Chief Scientist, PlanetCare; and Dr. Judith Weis, Professor Emerita of Biological Sciences at Rutgers University. The conversation will be moderated by Madeleine MacGillivray, Climate and Plastics Campaign Coordinator, Seeding Sovereignty.

Date: Thursday, January 12
Time: 2-3 pm PT | 5-6 pm ET
Click here to convert to your timezone.


Meli Hinostroza
Aya Eco Fashion & Arms of Andes

Meli is a Los Angeles-born Peruvian who has worked to bridge the gap between her ancestors’ heritage and the modern world by creating uniquely sustainable clothing made from the Inca’s most functional fiber, alpaca wool, and the softest organic fiber, organic pima cotton. With her brother, Rensso, they built a studio in Peru developing plastic-free clothing through their company “Arms of Andes,” a PPC Business Member. Her goals are to keep centering sustainability and spreading the word of what a real sustainable clothing industry should be. The siblings aim to redesign the fashion industry and educate consumers and manufacturers on how to choose and create sustainable and biodegradable clothing.

Dr. Andrej Kržan
Chief Scientist

Andrej holds a doctorate in chemistry and has been working in academic research for 25 years, focusing on the environmental aspects of polymers and plastics. He has coordinated several international projects and is a lecturer for waste management and polymer materials at the University level. Andrej joined PPC Business Member PlanetCare in 2018 with a wish to not just study an environmental problem but rather contribute to a solution for it. At PlanetCare, he is responsible for projects, external collaborations, and the laboratory.

Dr. Judith S. Weis
Professor Emerita of Biological Sciences
Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey

Judith is a Professor Emerita of Biological Sciences at Rutgers University, Newark, New Jersey. She has published over 250 refereed scientific papers and a technical book on marine pollution, and has edited several books. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and was a Science Policy Fellow with the U.S. Senate and a Fulbright Senior Specialist in Indonesia. She has been on advisory committees for U.S. EPA, NOAA (National Sea Grant Advisory Board), and the National Research Council. She also chaired the Science Advisory Board of the NJ Department of Environmental Protection. She served on the boards of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry, the Association for Women in Science, and the American Institute of Biological Sciences, of which she was President in 2001.


Madeleine MacGillivray
Climate and Plastics Campaign Coordinator
Seeding Sovereignty

Madeleine is a lifelong climate activist, microplastics-focused science communicator, sustainable brand consultant, and native of Brooklyn, NY. She holds an M.S. in Sustainability Management at Columbia University’s School of Professional Studies, and a B.A. in Environmental Policy from Barnard, having completed her undergraduate thesis on microplastics pollution at Columbia’s renowned Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory. Madeleine is the Climate and Plastics Campaign Coordinator at Indigenous-led Seeding Sovereignty, connecting environmental justice and the fossil fuel-to-plastic pipeline. Also an Ambassador and advisory board member of the 5 Gyres Institute, Madeleine specializes in microplastics pollution research and legislation. Madeleine communicates complex environmental issues with creativity, compassion, and empathy.


Guest blog by Andy Hughes, Photographer and Plastic Pollution Coalition Artist Ally 

This spring I left home in Cornwall, UK, and headed to Gapado Island, South Korea, to live and work as a Gapado Artist in Residence (Gapado AiR). I was nominated for the award by the Director of Turner Contemporary. Gapado Island is on target to be the world’s first completely carbon-neutral island by 2030. It’s a tiny landmass in the South China Sea (population of ~100 people). The UNESCO world-famous Haenyeo women divers live here; watching them dive and then resurface and whistle to each other, collecting sea trash as they practice their traditional shellfishing technique is eye-opening. 

North side of Gapado Island, stacked plastic waste collected by Haenyeo. Photo by Andy Hughes.

I’ll be living here for six months so I’m getting to know what life is like in a coastal place where plastic waste washes ashore in droves. It’s a scenario that is repeated across the globe everywhere sea and land meet. It’s where I began photographing plastic waste almost 35 years ago. So much has changed since then, especially the volume of plastic pollution, which has increased by a massive proportion and continues to surge today. Yet as plastic pollution has grown, so has the number of people dedicated to raising awareness of the problem, creating lots of noise about it. 

Living in South Korea affords me the rare opportunity to see firsthand how people in a country located far from my own act and think about the plastic pollution problem. Beyond the practicalities and activist methods used by many, this new experience is helping me to see the subject from a fresh perspective, perhaps in a more esoteric way. 

Plastic waste and climate change aren’t just technocratic problems, it’s about how we think and see the world. There are many differences socially, visually, and culturally; the issue of creating a “plastic-free” environment here doesn’t seem very high on the agenda. In some ways, I was shocked at how much stuff sold in South Korea is plastic wrapped, even in a country where the tradition of markets and market days has carried into the present. South Korea’s smaller towns and in the countryside still have weekly markets and remain an important part of South Korean life. These markets are often filled with a variety of fruit and vegetables (unwrapped), along with other items for daily living, such as clothes, pots, pans, soap and cleaning supplies (including lots of plastic). Plastic is affordable, and its properties are for many people very practical.

In South Korea, I have seen various messages about environmental issues, and it seems to me that there is strong public participation in recycling, at least where I am currently based. But as Plastic Pollution Coalition Members are well aware, recycling plastic is not enough to stop pollution; it’s continued plastic production that needs to be challenged. 

It is also worrying to see that there is so much advertising for bottled water here. Back home, bottled water companies have shifted from depicting beautiful people drinking from a bottle on their labels; instead, they use a classic blue color and other greenwashing techniques such as adding images of flowers or beautiful landscapes. I have seen many advertisements here that are clearly aimed at youth, and there’s heavy cultural focus on appearance, combined with a thriving makeup culture, dubbed “K-beauty.” It’s rich pickings for marketing water and all manner of soft drinks bottled in plastic packaging—which of course creates much pollution.

Plastic Free Jeju

Gwaki Beach, Jeju Island. Photo by Andy Hughes.

Set against this, there are some people pushing for positive change. On a very hot and humid summer’s day in July, I met an enthusiastic group at Aewol on Jeju Island, called “Plastic Free Jeju.” They show that there is a growing community in South Korea planting seeds for future germination. The children I met were super excited to be a part of the cleanup activities. I learned a new term too, it’s called “plogging,” which is when you pluck up pieces of trash while jogging. Plastic Free Jeju organized many events, holding one most weekends. You can find out more on their Instagram feed.

Plastic Free Jeju team warming up before the plogging near Gwaki Beach. Photo by Andy Hughes.

I asked their Founder, Kyeong, to tell me a little about their work and history to date, and following is what she said:

Some say Jeju is beautiful when viewed from 100 meters away. But if you look closer, there is a lot of garbage. The black rocks on the volcanic island of Jeju are full of waste. I set up Plastic Free Jeju to take action with citizen support. We hope to change mindsets here on the island. Although Jeju is famous for its drinking water, the consumption of bottled water by local residents is increasing. The garbage problem caused by this is very serious. Plastic bottled water is one of the most common types of garbage found in roadside bushes and beaches. To help reduce bottled water consumption, we have persuaded cafe owners in Jeju to provide free drinking water to anyone with a personal cup. Our group Plastic Free Jeju started in 2019. We pick up trash with the citizens and try our best to spread the Plastic Free Jeju campaign. Now, every weekend, we organize beach cleaning and urban plogging. Children participate in the plogging activities together, and together we perform our Plastic Free Jeju campaign song with them. I think picking up trash is important, but a lifestyle that doesn’t throw out trash is even more important. To do that, we need changes in our lives. I want Plastic Free Jeju to be a campaign that talks about life changes required for a sustainable global environment and leads our actions. I want to make a positive impact on citizens, government agencies, and help support others spread the word here in South Korea.

Kyeong ah, Founder of Plastic Free Jeju

Eco-anxiety and Solastalgia

Plastic Eclipse (2022) © Andy Hughes

In late September, the 7th International Marine Debris Conference (7IMDC) took place in Busan, South Korea. It is the world’s longest-running international conference dedicated to the issue of marine litter and plastic pollution. I exhibited work at the 5th conference in 2011, and since then there has been a sustained effort by many to raise the harms associated with plastic. There is now near universal agreement that it is a harmful material. 

Given plastic’s wide use and starring role in many of our daily lives, any attempt to cut our ties with it completely might seem fruitless and impossible. I’ve been making artwork connected to plastic waste for more than 30 years—as for myself, my thoughts about the subject have changed. More recently my thoughts have shifted towards a more philosophical approach rather than a continuation of my activist art practice. I recognize that, for some, this might sound like a cop out. Not so, as I have read more academic papers which connect the subject matter within a wider framework of eco-anxiety and solastalgia, I see and understand that economies which prioritize symbolism in communicating use waste itself symbolically. The goods we use and consume through this form of communication tether us to the profit motive, which is at the cornerstone of neoliberal economies, thereby rendering the environmental change we need almost impossible.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that choosing a bamboo toothbrush, rejecting a plastic straw, joining a beach cleanup, and so on is redundant. These actions are part of the mechanics of internal psychological shifts in perspective and should be encouraged. I hope my thoughts and creative practice will have some impact here in South Korea, but there’s no doubt that I will be taking fresh and new perspectives back with me to Cornwall.
You’ll be able to read more about Andy and his work in South Korea on his website later this autumn.

Creature Study (2022) © Andy Hughes

September 18, 2022 September 23, 2022

The 7th International Marine Debris Conference (7IMDC) will build on the momentum of past IMDCs by bringing together governments, industry, academia, civil society, and all relevant stakeholders, to discuss the latest science, strengthen collaborations, find solutions and catalyze action to address the urgent, global problem of marine litter and plastic pollution.

Participants will be able to submit abstracts and posters, attend technical sessions and join field activities to learn more about marine litter and plastic pollution.

There will be many opportunities to network, exchange ideas and learn from each other throughout 7IMDC.

Get inspired by attending exhibitions, movie nights, poster competition, learning how to go zero waste and much more!

Via Senator Ben Allen

Sacramento, CA – While celebrating advocacy for protection of natural resources during Ocean Day at the State Capitol, legislators announced a package of bills to address the mounting waste crisis affecting California’s coastline, landfills, and ratepayers. Led by Senator Ben Allen (D – Santa Monica), the group includes Senator Scott Wiener (D – San Francisco), Assemblymember Phil Ting (D – San Francisco), Assemblymember Steve Bennett (D – Ventura), Assemblymember Lorena Gonzalez (D – San Diego), Assemblymember Sydney Kamlager (D – Los Angeles), Assemblymember Wendy Carrillo (D – Los Angeles), and Assemblymember Laura Friedman (D – Glendale).

“Plastic waste is a global threat to our oceans, marine life, natural resources, and public health,” said Senator Allen, who chairs the Senate Environmental Quality Committee. “But it’s also hitting regular folks who are being asked to pay more and more through trash pickup rates to put patches on our broken waste management system. I’m glad to be joined by my colleagues as we work to tackle this issue. It’s going to take a coordinated, multi-faceted approach to begin to address this urgent financial, health, equity and environmental challenge.”

2021 Legislative Plastics & Waste Reduction Package:

SB 54 (Allen/Wiener/Stern/Gonzalez/Muratsuchi/Ting) – Plastic Pollution Producer Responsibility Act

SB 54 will ensure California is on the forefront of reducing pollution from single-use packaging and food serviceware waste by keeping the most problematic disposable items out of the waste system, saving local governments millions of dollars in disposal costs, and protecting the environment. The bill requires producers to reduce disposables by right-sizing packaging and shifting to reusables where possible. It also sets ambitious recycling and composting requirements for the material that does enter the state, requiring all disposable packaging and food serviceware to be truly recyclable or compostable by 2032.

SB 343 (Allen) – Truth in Labeling for Recyclable Material

SB 343 will reduce consumer confusion about which plastics are recyclable in California by building on California’s “Truth in Environmental Advertising” law. This law prohibits the use of the word “recyclable” on products that are not. SB 343 will extend this prohibition to also include the chasing-arrows symbol, which most consumers believe denotes recyclability. This clarification will reduce contamination in the state’s recycling system and enable consumers to make more informed choices.

AB 649 (Bennett) – California Buy Recycled
This bill requires state agencies to adhere to the same minimum content standards for procurement as private industry. As California’s state government is the largest single purchaser in the state, the focus on recycled products can only help grow the market-share of recycled content products. The bill covers not only the purchasing of products by agencies and departments, but service contracts with outside contractors as well. 

“As the single largest purchaser of goods and contracts in California, the state can create stronger economic incentives for businesses to use more recycled material in their products. AB 649 will ensure that State of California contracts and purchases contain the same amounts of recycled materials as private businesses are currently required to have. With global temperature and ocean pollution rising at an alarming rate, urgent, effective action towards a truly Circular Economy is needed,” said Assemblymember Bennett.

AB 802 (Bloom) – Microfiber Filtration in State and Commercial Facilities

In order to reduce the leakage of microfibers into our natural environment, AB 802 aims to identify the best available control technology for microfiber filtration and require state agencies as well as commercial and industrial facilities to adopt such technology.

AB 818 (Bloom) – Wipes

Requires certain premoistened nonwoven disposable wipes to be labeled with the phrase “Do Not Flush” and prevents them from making flushable claims.

“We have an addiction to single use plastics that pose an unimaginable threat to our oceans, to the environment, and to human health. These bills will help us curb our addiction to single use plastics in a sustainable and business-friendly way,” said Assemblymember Bloom.

AB 1276 (Carrillo) – Reduce Unnecessary Food Serviceware

AB 1276 will significantly reduce unnecessary waste and save businesses and local governments money. It expands the plastic straws upon request law to include other single-use food accessories, other food facilities, and third party delivery platforms – including food that is taken away, delivered, or served on-site. Additionally, for specified restaurants, reusable food serviceware is required for on-site dining.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has increased takeout and food delivery, which restaurants are relying upon to stay afloat. However, the use of disposable food accessories like plastic forks, spoons and knives, has led to a rise in single-use plastics and waste,” said Assemblywoman Wendy Carrillo. “AB 1276 is an important step to significantly reduce plastic waste that pollutes our oceans, harms marine life, harms our environment, and hurts low income communities of color while simultaneously providing financial savings to restaurants and local governments. AB 1276 will build on California’s existing efforts to combat waste from single-use items by ensuring food and beverage accessories are provided only upon request to customers.”

AB 1371 (Friedman) – Plastic Film in E-Commerce

AB 1371 will reduce harmful environmental and economic impacts of unnecessary single-use plastic by phasing out the use of plastic films — such as mailers, void fill and polystyrene peanuts — in e-commerce packaging.

AB 622 (Friedman) – Microfiber Filtration in Consumer Washing Machines

AB 622 will reduce the flow of microplastics from washing machines into the environment by requiring all new washing machines sold in California to include a microfiber filtration device by 2024.

“Plastic is everywhere and has become one the world’s most urgent environmental challenges. We have gone way too long without action and it’s time to change that,” said Assemblymember Friedman. “California can lead in the fight against microplastic and fiber pollution by setting standards that other nations and states will follow.” 

AB 881 (Gonzalez) – Recycling Export Reform

AB 881 would close the loophole in California law that enables exported mixed plastic waste to be deemed recycled even when it is landfilled, burned, dumped, or otherwise improperly managed. This would increase transparency and accountability for California’s waste management to ensure recycling truly means recycled into new products.

“There’s no time to waste. We have to stop treating our oceans and planet like a dumpster, and commit to urgently addressing the plastic pollution crisis to protect our communities and fragile ecosystems,” Assemblywoman Gonzalez said. “AB 881 provides a real solution to make sure we’re being honest about how our plastic waste is disposed and whether it’s truly recyclable.”

AB 962 (Kamlager) – Returnable Beverage Bottles

AB 962 will pave the way for returnable beverage bottle systems in California by allowing returnable (“refillable”) bottles to flow through the state’s Beverage Container Recycling Program. Rather than being crushed for recycling, the bottles can be preserved to be washed and refilled by beverage producers.

“According to a study in the World Wide Fund for Nature, human beings are consuming 1,769 tiny plastic particles and fibers every week. We have plastic waste in our beaches, rivers, oceans, and waterways. We must move faster and take action to protect our natural environment and improve our health down the line. I believe these bills are important steps in implementing a more sustainable option for our future,” said Assemblymember Kamlager.

AB 478 (Ting) – Thermoform Minimum Content 

This bill will support California’s recycling industry by setting minimum recycled content requirements for plastic thermoform food containers (i.e. berry boxes). Similar to last year’s AB 793, this bill would establish minimum recycled content using a phased approach – starting at 10% and eventually reaching 30%. The bill would also set penalties for manufacturers that do not meet the requirements, with the penalties increasing as the recycled content decreases.

AB 1201 (Ting) – Compost

This bill bans the sale of plastic products that are labeled “compostable” unless it meets specified standards and criteria.

“Single-use consumption is hurting us. We need to rethink what we put in our waste stream and redesign products so they can be repurposed into something else later on. If we don’t, future generations will be forced to clean up our irresponsibility. A circular economy makes sense for California because it generates new job opportunities, while also providing environmental benefits,” said Assemblymember Phil Ting, author of AB 478.

Join our global Coalition.


Jackie Nuñez, Founder of The Last Plastic Straw and Advocacy Program Manager at Plastic Pollution Coalition, was selected to embark on leg 15 of the eXXpedition, an all-women voyage to document plastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

The eXXpedition, a 2-year all-female sailing mission, is an immense project. The women selected to participate, represent less than 3% of the global applicants from more than 10,000 submissions from over 100 different nationalities.

The main goals of the eXXpedition are:

1. Solution-focused science,

2. Communications surrounding the issue of single-use plastic, especially microplastics and its detrimental effect on the oceans, and

3. Building a network of inspired changemakers.

Unfortunately, due to the global pandemic, Jackie’s voyage, Leg 15 that was to set sail from Darwin to Perth, AU in August 2020 was cancelled, and in its place she participated in a virtual “voyage” to Tonga, the first leg of a series of voyages that set out to accomplish the original goals virtually.

“Although it was not the travel adventure and hands on learning, sailing, and bonding that we would have had sailing on a boat together out at sea, it was a great experience and I enjoyed the connections I made with the other incredible women from different parts of the world on our virtual ‘voyage’ to Tonga,” said Jackie Nuñez, Founder of The Last Plastic Straw and Program Manager at Plastic Pollution Coalition. “I especially enjoyed our 5th watch ‘Talanoa,’ with local representatives from the Kingdom of Tonga where we learned about the local challenges and the work they are doing to raise awareness and work towards solutions to plastic pollution.”

Via Emily Penn –Virtual voyage Tonga

11 multidisciplinary women from 8 nationalities came together online for a 24 hour eXXpedition Virtual Voyage over two weeks, exploring the causes of and solutions to plastic pollution, including scientific discovery, problem solving techniques and leadership development.

Hailing from Micronesia, USA, Austria, Canada, Belgium, Iceland, Switzerland and the UK, the crew included a journalist, designer, sustainability manager, artist, content producer, photographer, management consultant and the founder of a movement to end plastic straws. The six-part Virtual Voyage included many of the best parts of our at-sea missions and on-shore workshops, and over the course of the different “watches” at all hours of the day, the crew shared their stories, analysed microplastic samples live, took part in a SHiFT Solutions Workshop, developed their own action plans and learned from each other’s expertise. The first collaboration happened under 15 minutes into the first watch!

The crew also conducted waste management surveys in their part of the world as part of an ongoing research project in partnership with the University of Georgia. They recorded over 933 items in 7 different countries, and together they analysed and compared their findings from around the globe. Continuing a route around the world, on Watch 5 the women took part in a virtual “Talanoa,” joined with local representatives from the Kingdom of Tonga to talk about the local challenges of a global issue. OHAI Incorporated, The Commonwealth Secretariat and No Pelestiki led a thought provoking discussion, opening doors for opportunities to explore ways to work on addressing plastic pollution in the region. As the first virtual voyage comes to an end, it’s just the beginning for this crew who are joining our community of changemakers. They are already planning to use their new knowledge and connections to change legislation around single-use plastic foodware in California, create a Water Innovation Lab, make new artwork to reflect the state of plastic pollution in island nations, manage expeditions of their own in Iceland and much more! We can’t wait to see what they do next. 

Voyage 2: Fiji has already kicked off! Stay tuned for the next dispatch.

Join our global Coalition.

California, U.S. – On Tuesday, supporters of an initiative to reduce plastic waste submitted more than 870,000 voter signatures to qualify the Plastics Free California initiative for the ballot – significantly more than the 623,212 signatures required.

The initiative was originally on track to appear on this November’s ballot; however, signature gathering was slowed to respect and protect public health as a result of the pandemic. A court extended the original deadline, and a surge of volunteer support provided the remaining signatures needed to appear on the next general election to occur after this November – presumably in November 2022.

The news was applauded by a wide range of respected individuals and organizations supporting the initiative. “Nearly eight million tons of plastic enter the ocean each year, mostly from single-use plastic items like bags, bottle caps, water bottles, and StyrofoamTM cups,” said California Coastal Commissioner and official initiative proponent Linda Escalante. “Consumer use of these products is measured in days or minutes, while the environmental, public health, and social costs are measured in generations or centuries.”

“The simple fact is, there is just too much plastic — and too many different types of plastics — being produced, sold and littered into the environment; and there exist few, if any, viable end markets for the much of the material,” said official initiative proponent Mike Sangiacomo, President and CEO of Recology. “This effort intends to course correct the situation by incentivizing a shift to more sustainable materials and developing end markets for the post consumer plastic that remains.”

“We produce about one million tons of plastic every day, and we’re on track to double that by 2030 and have more plastic than fish in our oceans by 2050,” said California Coastal Commissioner and official initiative proponent Dr. Caryl Hart. “Now is the time for Californians to take action by passing Plastics Free California.”

The initiative will:

  • Reduce plastic pollution
  • Restore and protect environments harmed by plastic pollution
  • Increase recycling

It will achieve this by:

  • Funding environmental restoration and protection of streams, rivers, beaches, and oceans harmed by plastic trash pollution.
  • Reducing the amount of plastic pollution in California by ensuring that all single-use plastic packaging be reusable, recyclable, or compostable by 2030.
  • Reducing the amount of single use plastic sold in California by 25% by 2030.
  • Instituting a statewide ban on non-recyclable plastic StyrofoamTM food containers. • Funding new recycling plants that will turn single-use trash into new products.
  • Protecting drinking water, reducing runoff from pesticides, and funding new composting facilities.
  • Charging corporate plastic manufacturers a penny tax on its single-use plastic packages to fund plastic recycling and environmental clean-up of plastic pollution.

“This initiative gives Californians a historic opportunity to turn the tide on the seemingly intractable problem of plastic pollution,” said Nick Lapis, Director of Advocacy for the environmental organization Californians Against Waste. “With the passage of this ballot measure, California will set a model for how to transition to a circular economy and invest in a healthy environment.”

“The Plastic Free California Initiative is critical to addressing the growing problem of plastics pollution and its real impacts in our rivers and ocean,” said Jay Ziegler, The Nature Conservancy’s Director of Policy External Affairs, “and given the tremendous voter support to qualify this initiative, we can see voters are eager and ready to take action to support this measure in the voting booth in 2022.”

“Our life-giving ocean is being overwhelmed by millions of tons of single-use plastic waste that ends up in the ocean every year,” said Aimee David, Vice President of Ocean Conservation Policy Strategy at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. “Plastic pollution is now found everywhere, from Arctic sea ice to the deepest ocean trenches. It’s in the bodies of microscopic organisms and the bellies of the largest whales. We know how to change this, and California can lead the way. This initiative harnesses the power of consumers, business and government so – together – we can rethink how we use and dispose of single-use plastic and achieve a healthy future for our ocean.”

“This initiative gives us the resources to move away from toxic plastics and towards a clean environment for all Californians while also investing in compost production and farmers who store carbon in healthy soils,” said Jeanne Merrill, Policy Director, California Climate and Agriculture Network (CalCAN).

“The Surfrider Foundation is excited that the California Recycling and Plastic Pollution Reduction Act will be on the 2022 ballot,” said Miho Ligare, Plastic Pollution Policy Coordinator for Surfrider Foundation. “The need for urgent action to reduce plastic pollution is undeniably clear. The first and foremost focus of our organization’s Plastic Pollution Initiative is on source reduction of single-use plastics, followed by recycling of remaining plastics. Eliminating non-reusable, non-recyclable, and non-compostable products and foodware, and reducing packaging are by far the most effective and least expensive way to protect the health of people, wildlife, and the environment. This innovative initiative will move us in the right direction towards making concrete impacts in tackling this plastic crisis.”

“It is more important than ever that we address the plastic pollution crisis that affects ecosystems and communities from material extraction all the way through disposal,” said Genevieve Abedon, on behalf of the Clean Seas Lobbying Coalition. “The recent increase in disposables contributes to our climate crisis, costs taxpayers and local governments to clean up, and threatens human and wildlife health. With the initiative requiring producers to reduce the amount of plastic single-use packaging and foodware they make and sell first and foremost, and pay a fee for any recyclable or compostable items that they continue to produce, Californians have a chance to vote for a comprehensive solution to help create real change in the system.”

More information is available at PlasticsFreeCA.org.