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Policy positions

The burning question: will companies reduce their plastic use?

Estimating greenhouse gas emissions from open burning of plastic waste in six countries

2020

A waste picker collecting plastic bottles at a dump in Tanzania.

A waste picker collecting plastic bottles at a dump in Tanzania. Photo: Daniel Msirikale/Tearfund

This report focuses on the actions and responsibilities of four of the world’s biggest plastic polluters: Coca-Cola, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever. These companies continue to sell billions of products in single-use bottles, sachets and packets in developing countries, despite knowing that waste is not properly managed in these countries.

Across six focus countries, these companies are responsible for more than half a million tonnes of plastic pollution every year. The open burning of this plastic creates the same amount of CO2 equivalent emissions as 2 million cars in the UK.

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