Today an estimated 60% of plastic marine debris derives from urban centers , as polluted waterways carry plastic pollution to the ocean. Nearly half of all plastic products were in fact produced after the year 2000 . This issue is only decades old, yet over 75% of all plastic ever produced is already waste .
While cities will rapidly increase their population densities to account for two-thirds of the global population by 2050 , they must also continue to adopt smart solutions that reduce the collective impact of their prospering communities. On plastic, this means preventing, minimizing and managing plastic, both as a resource, and as a global threat to our oceans.
Plastic Smart Cities is a WWF initiative that supports a no plastic in nature agenda. Since 2018, the initiative has supported cities and coastal centers in taking bold action to stop plastic pollution, with a goal to reduce plastic leakage into nature by 30% in the near term, and achieving no plastics in nature by 2030.
We encourage you to explore our growing catalogue of Best Practices, as categorized in the following six collections: Financial Instruments, Prevention, Collection, Reuse, Recycling and Disposal. These collections are aligned with the internationally recognized Waste Hierarchy, with Prevention as a first priority placed at the top of the hierarchy, and with Disposal at the bottom of the hierarchy, considered only as a last resort.
Plastic Smart Cities implement best practices that support the transition to a circular economy, where our packaging and waste leaves no impact on our planet, where materials are recycled and reused to their fullest potential, where resources are responsibly managed, and negative impacts are actively avoided.