MANILA – Greenpeace Philippines accused on Friday multinational majors like Nestle and Unilever of aggravating plastic pollution in the sea and listed Philippines as the third worst polluter of world’s oceans.
The environmental nonprofit, along with the Break Free From Plastic Campaign, carried out a study about ocean pollution that included an audit of plastic waste spanning 30 hectares (74 acres) in Manila Bay.
“These corporations are the missing piece in the global fight against plastic pollution. Citizens are burdened with the social and environmental impacts of plastic waste, rather than those that are responsible,” Abigail Aguilar, a campaigner for Greenpeace Philippines, said in a statement.
The Philippines, which generates 1.88 million metric tons of mismanaged plastic waste annually, is the third biggest polluter of oceans after China and Indonesia, according to the Greenpeace study.
The study said Nestle, Unilever, Indonesian company PT Torabika Mayora and the US entity Procter & Gamble were major contributors to ocean pollution in the Philippines.
It added multinationals market their products in small plastic sachets in developing countries, where people prefer buying in smaller quantities owing to their limited income.
Aguilar also called on the corporations to innovate and redesign their packaging instead of using plastic sachets or use reusable packets, with long term environmental and economic benefits.
The United Nations Environment Programme had warned earlier this year that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the oceans unless the use of single-use plastic objects, like bags and bottles, were curbed.