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    Assessing provisions and requirements for the sustainable production of plastics: towards achieving SDG 12 from the consumers’ perspective

    Leal Filho, Walter, Barbir, Jelena, Özuyar, Pınar Gökçin, Nunez, Enrique, Diaz-Sarachaga, Jose Manuel, Guillaume, Bertrand, Anholon, Rosley, Rampasso, Izabela Simon, Swart, Julia, Velazquez, Luis and Ng, Theam Foo (2022) Assessing provisions and requirements for the sustainable production of plastics: towards achieving SDG 12 from the consumers’ perspective. Sustainability, 14 (24). p. 16542. ISSN 2071-1050

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    Abstract

    Plastics are used widely, and modern civilization would have to behave differently without them. However, plastics pose a threat to sustainable life. This paper focuses on some of the provisions being made for sustainable production to date and focuses on one key sector-plastic manufacturing-where sustainable production patterns are urgently needed. The paper describes the latest trends related to plastic production, its environmental impacts, and how this sector is adjusting its processes in order to meet the current and forthcoming legal requirements and consumer demands. The methodological approach of the study has focused on both a literature review on the one hand and the consumers’ perspective obtained via a survey on the other. These two approaches were then crosschecked in order to assess current trends in plastic manufacturing and to understand how consumers see these trends as being consistent with the aims of the UN Sustainable Development Goal 12. The results obtained suggest that a greater engagement of consumers is needed in supporting the efforts to manage plastic more sustainably. Based on its findings, the paper provides useful insights linked to principles and tools for sustainable plastic production and design, and it demonstrates the usefulness and urgency of a sound materials management in order to tackle plastic pollution, one of today’s major environmental problems.

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