76 Nations sign Oceans Day Plastic Pollution Declaration Championed by Islands
08 June 2021
For World Oceans Day, a Small Island States’ stand against plastic pollution has garnered a swift and enthusiastic response at the UN.
At a high level UN General Assembly Debate last week on ocean conservation, Chair of the Alliance of Small Island States (AOSIS) Ambassador Aubrey Webson of Antigua and Barbuda, made a declaration for a new global agreement on plastic pollution. The declaration has already gained 76 country signatures in a week.
Marine plastic pollution is an issue of particular concern for island nations. The plastic produced globally can easily overwhelm the marine ecosystem services that these nations depend on for their survival.
“Millions of tons of plastic waste are dumped into our oceans every year,” said Ambassador Webson. “We have spent too long trying to address this issue from various angles, across various instruments, and it’s abundantly clear that this ad hoc approach is not working.”
Buoyed by the wide and rapid support for the declaration, Ambassador Webson is optimistic the the UN could successfully adopt a resolution this year to launch formal negotiations for a legally binding global agreement to combat plastic pollution.
“We need a dedicated global instrument to guide urgent and transformative actions before it’s too late.”
Read AOSIS’ full Oceans Day Plastic Pollution Declaration here: http://plasticdeclaration.aosis.org/