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Eliminate.Innovate.Circulate. Strategies from the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative

Within the framework of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative, the United Nations World Tourism Organization and the United Nations Environment Programme, in collaboration with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation co-organized this panel discussion with the following objectives:

During the panel, it was highlighted that:

  • It is essential to make decisions based on evidence as much as possible, and not be afraid to integrate reuse models since the customers are becoming more interested.
  • It is critical to be flexible when selecting implementation strategies to take into account the context in which we operate and local waste management capabilities.
  • It is key to recognize the role of suppliers and the sustainable procurement process to identify innovations that are feasible to implement and do not result in unintended environmental impacts.
  • It is important to enhance partnerships and share knowledge across stakeholders in the value chain so that all organizations in the sector can make progress.

During the session, 32 new signatories were welcomed to the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative which provides a framework to tackle plastic pollution and support the tourism sector towards building a circular economy of plastics. As part of the support provided by the GTPI team to the tourism stakeholders to tackle the plastic pollution problem, a keynote presentation was delivered at the beginning of the session on “A Life Cycle Approach – Key messages for tourism businesses” as it is highly needed and essential for sustainable decision making.


Addressing pollution from single-use plastic products: A Life Cycle Approach

Get to know the speakers


Watch here (in English)

Watch here in Spanish






  • Dirk Glaesser, Director, Sustainable Development of Tourism, UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)


Presentation: A Life Cycle Approach – Key messages for tourism businesses

  • Pablo Montes Iannini, Private Sector Analyst, Consumption and Production Unit, Economy Division, UN Environment Programme (UNEP)


Panel Discussion: Signatories of the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative (GTPI)



  • Virginia Fernandez-Trapa, Programme Officer, Sustainable Development of Tourism, UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)




  • Julie Allison, VP Sustainability & Transformation, ACCOR
  • Sibylle Riedmiller, Founder-Director, Chumbe Island Coral Park
  • Joshua Wong, Manager, Corporate Responsibility and Sustainability, Hongkong and Shanghai Hotels
  • José Hernández Bautista, Regional Quality & Process Improvement Sr. Manager Europe, Palladium Hotel Group
  • Madhu Rajesh, CEO, Sustainable Hospitality Alliance



Q & A


Wrap-up and conclusion

The latest news about the GTPI is available here!

Tools and resources for implementing the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative are available here!

Published on July 7, 2021
Event start date
12:00 pm
Event end date
01:00 pm

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