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Plastic Waste and its correlation with Maritime economies

June 19th, 2021
Environment and Recycling

Plastic Waste and its correlation with Maritime economies

June 19th, 2021
Environment and Recycling

Funding a sustainable global maritime economy may require a Paris Agreement, according to a new report from an international team of researchers led by the University of British Columbia in regards to environmental safety and controlling plastic waste. 

This is because a significant increase in sustainable maritime finance is needed to ensure a sustainable maritime economy that is in the interest of society and businesses in both developing and developing countries.

The report, released today on World Oceans Day, identifies key obstacles to funding such a sustainable maritime economy. This includes all ocean-based industries such as seafood, shipping, and renewable energy, as well as ecosystem goods and services such as climate regulation and coastal protection.

“The size of the maritime economy was estimated at $ 1.5 trillion in 2010 and is projected to reach $ 3 trillion by 2030,” said the lead author. Rashid Somayla, Professor at the UBCBC Institute for Oceans and Fisheries, School of Public Policy and Global Affairs, and Chair of Canadian Research in Interdisciplinary Economics of the Ocean and Fisheries.

“Nevertheless, a sustainable maritime economy with or without plastic waste needs healthy and resilient marine ecosystems that are severely threatened by human and climatic pressures,” the doctor said. “There are many opportunities for governments, financial institutions, and other actors to make financial gains in this kind of sustainable economy – but there are also many obstacles to overcome.”

The four main barriers identified in this study are:

  1. A poorly suited environment for sustainable maritime finance.

  2. Insufficient public and private investment in the maritime economy due to the lack of high-quality investable projects, with a suitable volume of transactions and a risk/return ratio commensurate with the available capital;

  3. Limited ability of people to visualize and develop attractive projects for investors. And

  4. Higher relative risk profile for investing in the ocean, where there is no favorable environment for insurance and risk reduction.

There is currently a lack of funding for a sustainable maritime economy. According to researchers, governments and public institutions can be a good starting point to fill this gap.

“There is scope for raising money from the use of the ocean and using some of it to improve its management,” the doctor said. The conservation budget gap for all ecosystems, including the budget for a sustainable maritime economy, is estimated at $ 300 billion worldwide. This is less than one percent of GDP. Can you imagine if governments would do this? “What are we going to do? Is there two or three percent?”

For decades, rich countries have shifted plastic waste and related environmental problems to poorer countries, but researchers have found a potentially positive aspect of this seemingly unequal trade: plastic waste can be an economic advantage for countries with low income.

What can we do about our plastic waste? 

In a study published in the journal World of Research Research, Washington State University, Yikang Bai and Jennifer Gavons of Utah State University analyzed 11 years of global plastic trade data versus economic measures for 85 countries. They found that imports of plastic waste were linked to per capita GDP growth in low-income countries.

“Our study offers a different understanding of the global plastic waste trade,” said Bai, a scientist who recently received his doctorate from WSU. Graduate and lead author of the study. “Industrial media often say that industrialized countries are shifting environmental damage to less developed countries. There is another level of history: plastic waste can be used as a source first, although it can still be used eventually. Increase environmental pressures in less developed countries.

The authors emphasize that plastic waste is still a big problem, especially for developing countries, as most of it is not recycled and even recycled plastics still have a negative impact on the environment. This study only shows that some plastic waste is purchased and reused before disposal.

how the study was conducted

For this study, Bai and Givens analyzed data from the United Nations and the World Bank, and several economic variables, as well as business information on common plastic wastes such as polyethylene and polystyrene, also known as plastics No. 1 and 2. Check out. They analyzed data from 45 high-income countries found mostly in the North, including Europe and the United States – and 40 low-income countries found mostly in the South, such as Botswana, El Salvador, and Vietnam.

These data were from 2003 to 2013, allowing researchers to perform a longitudinal analysis that shows changes over time and may show a strong correlation between actions. While they found a link between economic benefits and imports of plastic waste in low-income countries, there was no link between waste imports and economic growth for high-income countries.

While this study did not properly assess the use of plastic waste in developing countries, the authors suggest that some plastics are likely to be recycled for use in industry and manufacturing. There was also evidence of plastic waste being exchanged with each other in low-income areas.

“Most plastics are not recycled – this is important to keep in mind,” says Gewens, an assistant professor of sociology at USU. “A lot of plastic waste is dumped in landfills or the environment, so it may be important to note that the import of plastic waste is linked to economic development in developing countries. At least some of it is recycled,” he added. And no new materials are used because plastics are “made from chemicals for fossil fuels.”

The researchers stressed that the global trade in plastic waste is very complex. In the future, they want to look at regional trade between countries, as well as changes in recent years, especially given the fact that China stopped importing plastic waste in 2018.

What alternatives are there to plastic?

Despite the economic benefits of importing plastic waste, reducing the environmental impact of plastics still requires a change in high- and low-income countries, especially high-income countries, Bai said.

“Some people may argue that developed countries need to create more opportunities for better processing of plastic waste domestically than for other destinations for plastic waste abroad,” he said. The United States is very different. Some churches may function well, but in others, there is still room for improvement. The production and use of less plastic is another way to reduce environmental damage. “

This encourages financial institutions to invest and creates a conducive environment for private sector actors interested in promoting green capital that enhances the development of the oceans.

“And then you call the insurance companies because working at sea is basically more dangerous than working on the land,” says the doctor. Louise Tee, a research fellow at the Institute of Oceans and Fisheries.

The authors of the report point to public-private partnerships that have achieved significant results, including special green investment funds offered by the Netherlands that are exempt from income and profit taxes.

“These Dutch green funds have attracted more investment than can be used in existing systems – an encouraging sign of the future of such tools,” the doctor said. Somalia

The cost of inaction to maintain and use the ocean sustainably is high.

“If the importance of our work continues, as usual, we will face the costs of coastal protection, human resettlement, and land extinction – sea level rise – a cost of approximately $ 200 billion by 2100,” said Dr. Somayla. Sufficient funds to ensure a sustainable maritime economy are so large that the world may need the efforts of the Paris Agreement to meet its needs. “

The “Sustainable Maritime Economy Budget” was published in Nature Communications.

Article By:

Armin Vali

adapted from: Sciencedaily. 

Reference: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/06/210608203736.htm

 

 

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