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Responsible Alpha Signs UNEP Finance Initiative Finance Statement on Plastic Pollution

Responsible Alpha Signs UNEP Finance Initiative Finance Statement on Plastic Pollution

April 19, 2024

The Finance Statement on Plastic Pollution is a joint initiative from UNEP FI, the Principles for Responsible Investment, Finance for Biodiversity Foundation, the Business Coalition for a Global Plastics Treaty, the Dutch Association of Investors for Sustainable Development (VBDO) and CDP.

Responsible Alpha along with 160 global investors, banks, insurers and finance-related initiatives from 29 countries, representing $15.5 trillion in combined assets, signed the Finance Statement on Plastic Pollution.


The Statement amplifies the finance sector’s voice during the upcoming negotiation round of the global plastics treaty (INC-4) calling on governments to establish an ambitious policy framework to support the private finance sector in taking action to beat plastic pollution.

Responsible Alpha supports language in the treaty that has:


  • Binding rules and obligations for governments to address the full life cycle of plastic.

  • Basing the treaty on a scientific approach.

  • Aligning all economic participants with its objectives.

Plastic pollution is closely linked with the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution. As an example, plastic is projected to account for 15% of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 under business-as-usual. 


Financial institutions that have signed the statement acknowledge their role in mitigating the material financial risks related to plastic pollution and express their willingness to address the risks of plastic pollution through their financed activities and investment. Indeed, financial institutions are facing regulatory, transition, liability and stranded asset risks related to plastic pollution and the upcoming changes in the industry and its regulatory landscape.


One garbage truck of plastic is discarded into our oceans every minute. Plastic pollution is a serious global environmental threat. Exposure to plastics also harms human health, with the presence of microplastics found in human blood and even human placentas.

Beating plastic pollution can only be achieved through a system change and a massive redirection of financial flows. Scenarios indicate that for example investment would need to increase from virtually nothing to almost $400 billion per year by 2040 for infrastructure to enable reuse and elimination as the world starts phasing out single use plastics in combination with plastic substitute production.


The private sector represents 90% of investment in the plastics value chain, which is why financial institutions and their clients have an important role to play in the transition to a plastic pollution free economy.

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