A Regional Response to a Global Problem: Single-Use Plastics Regulation in the Countries of the Pacific Alliance

Unsustainable production and consumption patterns of single-use plastics are causing worldwide negative environmental and socioeconomic impacts on land-based and marine ecosystems. Nevertheless, in Latin America, plastics governance is still fragmented across borders because of dispersed normative adoption and limited regional coordination. In this context, the instrumental level of articulation between the international principles of environmental law and the formal legal arrangments from the Pacific Alliance is assessed to analyse how this strategic platform can contribute with a regional response to the global problem of single-use plastics.

For this purpose, an illustrative case study of the national and subnational regulation developed by the Pacific Alliance and its members was performed. A framework analysis was conducted on the official legal documents from Mexico, Colombia, Chile, Peru and Ecuador. The results show extensive and scattered subnational regulation to control plastic bags’ consumption and single-use plastics, with diverse policies on extended producer responsibility, education and economic strategies to influence mainly the consumer’s behaviour. Recommendations are presented to improve plastics governance in the region through the legal component. 

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Authors: Adriana Abril Ortiz, et al
Full Document: 2020, A Regional Response to a Global Problem_ Single-Use Plastics Regulation in the Countries of thePacific Alliance