Half of the world's plastic production is for single-use items. And more than 90% of plastic is never recycled, instead polluting our planet’s landscapes and oceans. While efforts to improve current waste management systems are important, there is a rapidly growing recognition among stakeholders that we need to fundamentally rethink the way we produce, distribute, and consume.
Consumers Beyond Waste is a multistakeholder initiative facilitated by the World Economic Forum’s Future of Consumption platform. It brings together leading private, public and civil society sector actors committed to empowering consumers to access innovative consumption models at scale that offer aspirational, affordable and more sustainable alternatives to single-use.
To do so, the coalition focuses its efforts specifically on reuse and durability-based solutions and provides a platform for stakeholders to identify, guide and enable the testing and scaling of such models. The initiative is designed to drive learning and impact on the ground, partnering with leading cities to model and test the viability of new models in specific geographies.
In 2020, the coalition focused on three areas:
- Developing a multi-stakeholder perspective to answer the key question: "How can public and private organizations partner to empower consumer access to new reuse models of consumption?" This will result in a joint modelling framework for better understanding the economic, environmental, and social determinants of reuse systems.
- Developing a playbook for cities to test and enable integrated reuse systems on the ground
- Advancing cross-ecosystem efforts to develop two sets of shared guidelines for reuse: a) Health and safety guidelines b) Design guidelines
Over 2021, the coalition aims to continue thought leadership, best practices sharing and catalyzing and accelerating partnerships to accelerate and help scale reuse models across the world, with a focus on engaging consumers.
If you are a business, innovator, solution provider, NGO, public entity or other stakeholder interested in contributing to this agenda, we would welcome hearing from you. We are also interested in connecting with and amplifying existing coalitions and initiatives already active in this space. For further information on how to engage, please contact Mayuri Ghosh, Strategy & Public Private Partnerships, Future of Consumption Platform (Mayuri.Ghosh@weforum.org).
Consumers Beyond Waste closely collaborates with other related efforts, such as the Platform for Accelerating the Circular Economy (PACE), the Global Plastics Action Partnership (GPAP) and the Ellen MacArthur Foundation's New Plastic Economy initiative.