Davos hates plastic this year.
“Plastic has become the nuclear waste of our generation,” said Marc Benioff, the Salesforce CEO and environmental activist.
Climate and the environment are big topics at the conference. Experts have pointed to how much damage plastics can cause, including the concern that there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans by 2050 if nothing is done. They've also observed that every single piece of plastic ever produced still exists, unless it has been burned.
But there is still hope.
The European Union plans to ban 10 single-use plastic products starting 2021, and force its member states to recycle 90% of plastic bottles by 2025.
Major cities and countries around the world, including Taiwan, Seattle, and Vancouver, have banned plastic straws. India is cracking down on single-use plastic. And the United Kingdom proposed a ban on plastic straws, drink stirrers and cotton swabs.
“I don’t think I have seen a single issue like plastics, where companies, business leaders, governments are coming together to really try to solve it,” said Nina Jensen, marine biologist and the CEO of REV, the the Research Expedition Vessel project.