BillerudKorsnäs, the leading Swedish provider of renewable packaging materials and solutions, has launched a partnership with the French scientific research foundation Tara Expeditions. The partnership will concern scientific research on the consequences of plastic littering in the oceans.
Eight million tonnes of plastic waste are deposited into the sea each year. This corresponds to 16 plastic bags per meter of the world’s total coast lines. These findings were recently published in the journal Science. There is, however, still very little research that shows how all this plastic affects the oceans, animals and people. In order to fill the gap, Tara Expeditions conducts scientific expeditions aimed at collecting and understanding how plastic affects the marine ecosystem.
“Our goals with the results of this research are to inform the public that a change in behaviour is crucial. We also hope to influence decision-makers to regulate and reduce plastic littering in the oceans as well as to encourage industries to develop innovative alternatives to plastic. BillerudKorsnäs, with its renewable fiber based product range, proposes an alternative to plastic packaging, and is thus a relevant and suitable partner for us”, says Romain Troublé, secretary general, Tara Expeditions.
BillerudKorsnäs challenges conventional packages for a sustainable future. The company’s notion is that smart packaging solutions made of paper and carton board reduce detrimental environmental impact and contribute to a sustainable future. In order to gain valuable knowledge and new insights, BillerudKorsnäs works closely with brand owners, packaging manufacturers and partners around the world.
“BillerudKorsnäs has a lot to learn from Tara, lessons we can use in our product development. Both Tara and BillerudKorsnäs are constantly seeking new answers to sustainability challenges and want to drive a change towards a more sustainable future. We also share a vision of a future in which plastics in the ocean is an issue of the past”, says Henrik Essén, director of Communications and Sustainability, BillerudKorsnäs.
The partnership will begin with BillerudKorsnäs’s participation at “Beyond Plastic Med”, an international conference which Tara is co-arranging with other organizations. BillerudKorsnäs will be speaking on the theme “Innovation: a solution that works for ecological transition?”
“We want to communicate how our innovation agenda and our products can contribute to the solution of the plastic waste in ocean. Packages made of paper and carton board are of course not the entire solution, but can through correct use make a difference. The conference, which points to innovation as one possible solution to plastic littering, is therefore an excellent forum for us”, says Henrik Essén.
Beyond Plastic Med will be held in Monaco on the 10th and 11th of March 2015. Read more about Tara Expeditions at taraexpeditions.org