August 2023

QUNO's INC-3 Submission on Reuse, Refill, and the Midstream Segment of Plastic Lifecycle

At its second session, the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee requested the Secretariat to invite written submissions on (a) Elements not discussed at INC-2, such as principles and scope of the instrument (using Template A), and (b) Any potential areas for inter-sessional work compiled by the cofacilitators of the two contact groups, to inform the work of INC-3 (using  Template B).

In response to this call, the Quaker United Nations Office made two contributions on behalf of the Friends World Committee for Consultation (FWCC) to inform the work of the INC-3. Our first submission, which focuses on reuse, refill, and the midstream segment of the plastic lifecycle, outlines a vision for an international treaty that considers unique requirements for diverse sectors, notably focusing on circular approaches like reuse and refill methods. It emphasizes economically viable solutions that benefit everyone in the supply chain, especially tailored to the challenges of developing nations. The proposal suggests utilizing funds from mechanisms like the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism for plastics, underlining the potential these have in advancing sustainability. The interconnectedness of environmental responsibility and social fairness is highlighted, emphasizing tailored strategies for small businesses. The document also underscores the importance of consistent global standards and collaboration, pointing to the roles of entities like the World Trade Organization. Lastly, the submission combines insights from international trade law and environmental concerns to present forward-looking strategies, emphasizing fairness and inclusivity.