Scaling Up Plastic Waste Collection and Recycling

Scaling Up Plastic Waste Collection and Recycling

Plastic Waste Reduction Program

The Plastic Waste Reduction Program (Plastic Program) enables robust impact assessment of new or scaled-up waste collection and recycling projects.

Frequently Asked Questions

More than 350 million tonnes of plastic are being used every year, and just a fraction of this is being recycled. Plastic waste has become a critical concern to a number of companies and consumers. However, without new incentives it will be challenging to meaningfully scale up waste collection and recycling to the levels needed to reduce the use of virgin material and keep significant amounts of plastic from entering the environment and the world’s oceans.

The Plastic Program is used for consistent accounting and crediting of a variety of plastic collection and recycling activities. It drives investment into projects that increase the collection of plastic waste from the environment and/or its recycling. The Program enables the independent auditing of projects to determine the extent to which they have reduced plastic waste in the environment and/or increased recycling. Credits are issued based on how much plastic is collected and recycled above baseline rates (i.e., what would have happened in the absence of the project activity). This “plastic crediting mechanism” provides an efficient and powerful means of financing activities that verifiably reduce plastic in the environment anywhere in the world.

How to Use Plastic Credits

The development of the Plastic Program was conceptualized and supported by the 3R Initiative of which Verra is a founding member.

How It Works

Projects developed under the Plastic Program follow a rigorous assessment process in order to be certified. The Plastic Program covers a diverse range of activities including waste collection from the environment, development of new municipal infrastructure, collection and sorting of recyclable plastic waste, and the development and/or scaling up of new recycling technologies.

Plastic Standard: The Plastic Waste Reduction Standard lays out the rules and requirements which all projects must follow in order to be certified.

Independent Auditing: All Plastic Program projects are subject to desk and field audits by both qualified independent third parties and Verra staff to ensure that standards are met and methodologies are properly applied.

Accounting Methodologies: Projects are assessed using a technically sound plastic waste collection or recycling quantification methodology specific to that project type.

Verra Registry: The Verra Registry is the central storehouse of data on all registered projects and will track the generation, retirement and cancellation of all Plastic Credits. To register with the program, projects must show that they have met all standards and methodological requirements.

Explore Plastic Program Projects

Sign up here for updates on the Plastic Standard

21 April 2021

Good Fruit & Vegetables: “Plan to recover banana plastic and reduce on-farm waste”

This article by James McManagan highlights a project that aims to incentivize banana growers to…

26 February 2020

Plastics Recycling Update: “Can credit trading drive dollars to plastics recovery?”

An article titled “Can credit trading drive dollars to plastics recovery?” looks at Verra’s Plastic…

11 February 2021

Plastics News: “NGOs: plastics pollution credit programs need more work” ($)

This article ($) in Plastic News by Steve Toloken discusses potential concerns around plastic crediting…

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Photo: Darren Centofanti

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