Global Tourism Plastics Initiative by UNWTO welcomes more signatories
The new signatories will commit to tackle plastic pollution in the tourism sector
The Global Tourism Plastics by UNWTO Initiative has welcomed further 21 signatories, taking the total number past 110. The new signatories have been announced alongside the launch of a first annual report, which makes clear the significant progress made in tackling plastics pollution in tourism over the past year.
Despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Accor, Club Med, Hong-Kong and Shanghai Hotels, Iberostar, Melco, Six Senses have all reported continuous efforts to implement their commitments to tackle plastic pollution. Together, they have eliminated over 108 million plastic items and packaging in 2020, totalling around 804 metric tons.
“In just one year, the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative has made a real impact. Together, signatories have cut their use of plastic by 800 metric tons, equivalent to 27 large shipping containers full of plastic. I congratulate all those businesses and destinations for their commitment and welcome the 21 newest signatories to the Initiative – a clear sign that tourism is working hard to become more sustainable, even in times of crisis,” Zurab Pololikashvili, Secretary-General, UNWTO.
deSter, a member of Gate Group and the leading supplier to the aviation, hospitality and foodservice industries has also reported progress, for instance by discontinuing the launch of new products with non-recyclable materials; working on fiber-based technologies and closed loop recycling pilots with customers; and developing new designs.
“We are delighted to have joined the Global Tourism Plastic Initiative through our Bye Bye Plastics program: Club Med has already removed disposable plastic items on a global scale such as cups, straws, cutlery, plates as well as individual plastic packaging from shower gel, shampoo and lotion and from other in-room accessories. We are now aiming to remove single use plastic accessories from our rooms and festive events as well as reducing by up to 50 per cent the use of plastic water bottles in 2024 (compared to 2019),” said Florian Duprat, Sustainability manager, Club Med.
The Global Tourism Plastics Initiative unites the tourism sector behind a common vision to address the root causes of plastic pollution. It is led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Tourism Organization in collaboration with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation. The Global Tourism Plastics Initiative was endorsed by the Executive Council of the World Tourism Organization at its 114th meeting held on 1st December 2021 during the UNWTO General Assembly in Madrid, encouraging Member States to take part in the fight against plastic pollution.
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