Global Plastics Outlook: Economic Drivers, Environmental Impacts and Policy Options

While plastics are extremely useful materials for modern society, plastics production and waste generation continue to increase with worsening environmental impacts despite international, national and local policy responses, as well as industry commitments.
Global Plastics Outlook: Economic Drivers, Environmental Impacts and Policy Options

This article is part of a series in which OECD experts and thought leaders  from around the world and all parts of society  address the COVID-19 crisis, discussing and developing solutions now and for the future.

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How can government policies respond to the urgent need to help make the lifecycle of plastics more circular? How can the expansion of national policies and improved international co-operation help mitigate environmental impacts all along the value chain? 

Join us on 22 February 2022 from 15:00-16:15 CET (Paris time) to explore these questions and more during the launch of the Global Plastics Outlook: Economic Drivers, Environmental Impacts and Policy Options. This Outlook is the first report to comprehensively take stock of current plastics production, use and waste generation, uncover the underlying economic drivers and map the related environmental impacts on a global level. The report intends to help decision-makers understand the direction in which we are heading and assess which policies can support a more sustainable and circular management of plastic materials. 

The report quantifies the current production, use, disposal and key environmental impacts throughout the entire plastics lifecycle and identifies opportunities for reducing the negative externalities. It also investigates how plastics use and waste have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic across sectors and regions.

The webinar will include a presentation of the key findings and four key levers that are essential to bend the plastics curve: markets for recycled (secondary) plastics, technological innovation in plastics, domestic policy measures and international co-operation, including international financing.


  • Opening remarks: Rodolfo Lacy, Director of OECD Environment Directorate
  • Panel Moderation: Ingrid Barnsley, Deputy Director of OECD Environment Directorate
  • Presentation of the report: Shardul Agrawala, Head of the Environment and Economy Integration Division, OECD Environment Directorate
  • Panellist: Prof. Roland Geyer, University of California, Santa Barbara, Bren School of Environmental Science and Management
  • Panellist: Miranda Schnitger, Government Lead, Ellen MacArthur Foundation
  • Discussion, together with Peter Borkey, Maarten Dubois and Elisa Lanzi, Environment and Economy Integration Division, OECD Environment Directorate

Duration: 1 hour and 15 minutes (Presentation and panel discussion, followed by Q&A session)

This webinar will take place via Zoom and advance registration is required. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. If you do not receive this email or for more information, please contact

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