Unwrapped: The Good, Bad and Ugly Side of Plastic

On 9 December 2020, more than 470 people registered for the online interactive event that marked the beginning of a partnership between Plastic Oceans Australasia (POA) and Veolia.

Throughout the event, Ricki Hersburgh, Executive Director of POA, and Richard Kirman, CEO of Veolia Australia and New Zealand, discussed the latest developments in recycling, plastic waste policy, and plastic waste innovation.

Richard Kirman highlighted extended producer responsibility, improving labelling standards and material levies as ways to engender plastic behaviour change.

Richard also provided examples of innovation from his time at Veolia UK, such as a processing plant in East London that turns 300 million milk bottles a year back into food grade plastic.

During the Q&A session, participants asked a series of questions about recycling, soft plastics, repurposing plastic materials and Food and Garden Organics (FOGO).

Plastic Oceans Australasia and Veolia’s partnership will include the first education program of its type where school groups can engage with waste management solutions and facilities to better understand waste treatment and recovery; creating greater knowledge sharing amongst leaders in waste management and the next generation.

Veolia is also committed to “walking the talk” by reducing single-use and soft plastics across their business, using POA’s EPIC program.

POA will continue to collaborate with leaders in waste management on upcoming Unwrapped webinars to unpack how industry and organisations can work together to make plastic a reusable resource by instigating behavioural change through POA’s programs.