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How venture capital can help stem the flow of ocean plastic waste

World Economic Forum


Economic growth has exacerbated the plastic waste problem - but it contains the solution, too. Targeted investment can bridge the finance gap hampering Asia's waste sector. Investment in just five countries could reduce plastic ocean flows by 45%.


Asia’s exponential growth has made it into a powerful economic force, but it also has placed the region at the heart of the ocean pollution crisis. More than half of the plastic that flows into the ocean comes from South and Southeast Asia. The meteoric rise in consumption, and the single-use, disposable mindset that comes along with it, have far outpaced the modernization of recycling and waste management systems needed to cope with the consequences.


The good news is that this economic growth means that there is capital available. So while we acknowledge that there’s no silver bullet for solving this challenge, we see capital investment as a solution, albeit with one barrier: who’s going to pay for it?


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