The Global Tourism Plastics Initiative unites the tourism sector behind a common vision to address the root causes of plastic pollution. It enables businesses, governments, and other tourism stakeholders to take concerted action, leading by example in the shift towards circularity in the use of plastics.

Implemented in

  • Africa
  • Asia / Pacific
  • Europe and Central Asia
  • Latin America / Caribbean
  • Middle East
  • North America

Sectors of activity
Consumer Goods, Waste, incl. Chemicals, Tourism

Type of initiative
Capacity Building & Implementation, Education & Awareness Raising, Policy Frameworks & Tools

Start date
21/01/2020

End date
31/12/2025

Objectives

Tourism companies and destinations have been making great strides towards reducing their environmental impact and operating in harmony with nature. Yet, the problem of plastic pollution in tourism is too big for any single organisation to fix on its own. To match the scale of the problem, changes need to take place across the whole tourism value chain. Therefore tourism stakeholders around the world are working together and taking a systemic approach through the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative.

The Global Tourism Plastics Initiative requires tourism organizations to make a set of concrete and actionable commitments by 2025:

Eliminate problematic or unnecessary plastic packaging and items;
Take action to move from single-use to reuse models or reusable alternatives;
(Engage the value chain to) move towards 100% of plastic packaging to be reusable, recyclable or compostable;
Take action to increase the amount of recycled content across all plastic packaging and items used;
Collaborate and invest to increase the recycling and composting rates for plastics;
Report publicly and annually on progress made towards these targets.

Activities

As collected through the One Planet Reporting

Output level

Outreach and communication for SCP

  • Announcement of first round of signatories of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative
  • Second round of announcement of signatories of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative

Outcome level

SCP changes in practice

  • Global Tourism Plastics Initiative signed by 46 companies and civil society representatives

Impact and Results

The Global Tourism Plastics Initiative supports companies, destinations, associations and NGOs through:

Sharing information about actions and solutions to the plastic pollution challenge being implemented across the sector;
Fostering sustainable procurement practices and collaboration with suppliers;
Promoting collaboration at destination level to improve waste management practices;
Consolidating and disseminating the progress reported by all signatories;
Showcasing the leadership of the sector.

Next steps and how to get involved

How to become part of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative
Businesses, destinations, associations and NGOs can become signatories of the Initiative.

"Business signatories" include tourism businesses of all subsectors. Currently, there are signatory packs available for accommodation providers, tour operators, travel agents, online travel agents, platforms and suppliers. Interested airlines, cruise lines and event organisers can join the co-creation process of tailored commitments, which are currently in development.

"Destination signatories" include national and local governments or destination management organizatoins (mainly public sector led).

Associations and NGOs can become "supporting organization signatories", together with business networks and other entities such as certification schemes, academia, consultancies and/or destination management organizations (mainly public-private or private sector led), which although do not have a large plastic footprint per se, can create multiplier effects across the tourism value chain.

Potential signatories should familiarise themselves with the Terms of Reference of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative as well as its common vision and common definitions, which can also be found in the annexes of the signatory packs for each respective organisation type at the pages linked to below.