World Economic Forum’s plastic pollution platform announces new civil society, business partners at Davos Agenda

Press Release   January 25, 2021

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Averda, Borealis, Bye Bye Plastic Bags, Lonely Whale and The Ocean Cleanup have joined the World Economic Forum’s Global Plastic Action Partnership.

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Five leading organizations from the civil society and private sectors have joined the Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP), the World Economic Forum’s platform for advancing progress in the fight against plastic waste and pollution, as well as transitioning governments, businesses and society towards a sustainable, circular economy for plastics.

Averda, Borealis, Bye Bye Plastic Bags, Lonely Whale and The Ocean Cleanup officially signed on to GPAP at the Davos Agenda, a global virtual summit hosted by the World Economic Forum that is dedicated to helping leaders choose innovative and bold solutions to stem the COVID-19 pandemic, reset priorities, and begin the journey towards a robust and inclusive recovery.

Created by a public-private coalition of global leaders and housed at the World Economic Forum since late 2018, GPAP aims to shape a more sustainable and inclusive world through the eradication of plastic pollution. It has launched three national partnerships with the Governments of Indonesia, Ghana, and Viet Nam, supporting local stakeholders in the effort to meet ambitious national plastic pollution targets, such as Indonesia’s goal of reducing marine plastic debris by 70% by 2025.

“We are thrilled to start off the new year with this boost of positive momentum for the global plastic action movement,” said Kristin Hughes, GPAP Director and Member of the Executive Committee at the World Economic Forum. “As a platform that urges for greater participation, commitment and action from all sectors of society to combat the plastic pollution crisis, we are delighted to serve as a convening point for all, from policy-makers to business leaders to grassroots activists. I look forward to their valuable insight and contribution to our work, particularly in our partner countries.”

“Averda joined GPAP because we recognize that no one organization, company or country can solve the crisis of plastic pollution alone,” said Brindha Roberts, Director of Sustainability at Averda. “We look forward to developing strong practical partnerships with other GPAP members which will help turn off the tap of plastic waste into our precious environment and stimulate the creation of a truly circular economy fit for the future.”

“At Borealis, we are convinced that through collaboration in a circular economy we can successfully address the complex issue of marine littering,” explained Alfred Stern, Borealis CEO. “By engaging strategic partners from across the value chain, we are expanding Project STOP in Indonesia as a lighthouse initiative to design, implement and scale circular solutions that prevent the leakage of waste into the environment. Life demands progress. GPAP is an ideal collaboration platform for translating commitments into action, where together, we can re-invent for more sustainable living.”

“The time for change has never been better and more needed than now,” said Melati Wijsen, Founder of Bye Bye Plastic Bags, who will also serve as chair of GPAP’s inaugural cohort of youth champions under 30. “I have seen this through the work I’ve done for the last seven years on the frontline with my NGO Bye Bye Plastic Bags to make the people of Bali say no to single-use plastic bags. That is why I believe in the mission of GPAP and why I am incredibly honored and excited to join as a young changemaker.”

“Lonely Whale is inspired by the power of community to create the change needed to ensure a healthy planet,” said Dune Ives, CEO of Lonely Whale. “As the convener of the NextWave Plastics consortium, we bring together multinational corporations to keep plastic in the economy and out of the ocean by building a global network of ocean-bound plastic supply chains. Now, as a member of the Global Plastic Action Partnership, we can support the alignment of market-driven approaches with holistic waste management strategies that bring together governments, businesses, and communities to put an end to plastic pollution.”

“The Ocean Cleanup is delighted to be part of GPAP and looking forward to collaborating with them,” said Boyan Slat, CEO of The Ocean Cleanup. “Plastic pollution is a global issue, therefore parallel efforts must be made in reducing single-use plastic, improving waste management, and accelerating cleanup solutions. The road to cleaner oceans may not be easy but we are determined to deploy ocean cleanup systems and Interceptors worldwide so we can significantly contribute to a clean ocean by 2040.”

These five organizations will work closely with GPAP at the global and local levels to contribute expertise and resources in areas such as unlocking financing, boosting innovation and promoting inclusivity. In joining GPAP, they have committed to sharing learnings and best practices; making pledges to reduce plastic pollution; actively participating in global and regional meetings; and leading circular plastics initiatives within their organizations.

As affiliate members, they join the ranks of DEME Group, Indorama Ventures, Gemini, Jacobs, Morgan Stanley, SAP, Suntory Holdings and Unilever,  as well as GPAP founding members Dow; Nestlé; PepsiCo; The Coca-Cola Company; the Governments of the United Kingdom and Canada; the World Bank Group; and the World Resources Institute.

GPAP’s priorities in 2021 include translating national commitments into concrete actions, particularly through developing ambitious plastic action roadmaps in Ghana and Viet Nam and supporting the subsequent implementation of these recommended strategies through locally led Task Forces, as it is currently doing in Indonesia. It will also look to expand operations into more countries, as well as spearhead efforts to mainstream the challenges and perspectives of women and marginalized communities, including informal sector waste pickers, across all segments of the plastics value chain. Details can be found in the GPAP Annual Impact Report, released in September 2020.


For more information about this announcement or to learn more about contributing to the Global Plastic Action Partnership’s vision of business, government and civil society working together to accelerate the transition to a circular plastic economy, please contact