Investment into plastics circularity can help us reach our climate goals faster
COP27 will be remembered as the event at which the world stad to count the staggering cost of inaction - one that developing nations increasingly must bear. With a report from the governments of Egypt and the UK estimating that investments of $2 trillion USD a year by 2030 will be needed for emerging economies to cut emissions, boost resilience and deal with the loss and damage, it is evident that it is a cost that governments cannot meet alone. Focusing our attention on how to generate the significant capital needed, we must recognise the potential that investing in enabling mechanisms -- such a circular economy -- can have in attaining our climate goals. Financing cannot only be limited to widely discussed areas such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. In fact, without further intervention, up to 13% of the global carbon budget by 2050 will be attributable to greenhouse gas emissions from the plastic lifecycle alone. As the world continues to move forward with critical climate negotiations and ambitions, the message is consistently clear; investment will need to drastically ramp up. There is a dearth of financing to address both climate change and plastic pollution, and investors need to look at these cross-cutting issues holistically and through innovative mechanisms. Investment into circular plastics should be seen as a mechanism to address climate change. If action on either interconnected challenge is to happen on time and at scale, policymakers, private investors and the holders of public capital must work together to bridge the financing gap that stands in our way.