Young Activists Call for an ‘End Plastics Use’ in Nairobi March

The menace of plastics has continuedly proven to be an incurable wound that keeps festering hence the urgency for a call to action in regulating the production and use of plastics globally. Manufacture of plastics globally has more than doubled since the start of the century reaching 460 million tons and it’s predicted to triple by 2060 if nothing is done since only about nine percent is currently recycled.

In preparation for the third session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Meeting (INC-3) scheduled from 13 to 19 November 2023 at the UNEP Headquarters in Nairobi, Kenya, hundreds of activists marched the streets of Nairobi calling on action against the wide uncontrolled use of plastics.

The young activists chanted demonstrating solidarity in giving a voice for breaking free from plastics. This march was a symbolic gesture of powerful expressions filled with dedication to the #BreakFreeFromPlastic Campaign and the urgent mission to protect our planet. 

The march was more than a gathering as it displayed a collective call to action, a resounding demand for our world leaders to prioritize and take meaningful steps to address the plastic crisis. Young activists in the march chanted and waved placards with messages like “Plastic crisis = climate crisis”, “End multigenerational toxic exposure,” and “Let polluters pay the price”.

Young activists in a march against increased use and production of plastics in Nairobi…@courtesy

The Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC) formed in 2022 was mandated to develop “the instrument,” by 2024 which is to be based on a comprehensive approach that addresses the full life cycle of plastic, including its production, design, and disposal.

The representatives of more than 170 nations are set to meet in Nairobi on Monday to negotiate what concrete measures should be included in a binding worldwide treaty to end plastic pollution. This third meeting is significant as it has an opportunity to debate a draft treaty published in September that outlines the many pathways to tackling the plastic problem.

An increase in levels of plastic pollution represents a serious global environmental issue that negatively impacts the environmental, social, economic, and health dimensions of sustainable development. 


According to UN advisory, under a business-as-usual scenario and in the absence of necessary interventions, the amount of plastic waste entering aquatic ecosystems could nearly triple from some 9–14 million tonnes per year in 2016 to a projected 23–37 million tons per year by 2040.

Effects of plastics on human health are considered adverse even though not yet confirmed, the presence of microplastics from the deep seas, oceans, in the clouds and the human body has raised concerns. As cited by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, plastics contribute to global warming, accounting for 3.4% of global emissions in 2019. 


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