Resource Footprint Tracker Plastic Waste Management Model for WWF

November 18, 2020 | Case Study,

Anthesis has played an integral role in supporting ReSource: Plastic’s goal of streamlining critical data for addressing the plastic pollution crisis by helping connect the dots on waste for an unprecedented and transparent view into the global plastic system.

Alix Grabowski, Deputy Director Plastic & Material Science
World Wildlife Fund

Objective

In May 2019, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) launched ReSource: Plastic to close a critical measurement and reporting gap on corporate plastic engagement, helping companies turn their large-scale commitments into meaningful measurable action. The initiative works with a membership group to measure their plastic footprint and to track plastic management outcomes by country. WWF selected Anthesis as a consultancy partner to develop and supply the implementation of a global model for the waste management outcomes of plastics.

Project

Anthesis worked with WWF to develop the ReSource Footprint Tracker’s “Waste Management Model” to estimate the likely waste management outcome (recycled, landfilled, incinerated, or mismanaged) of a company’s consumer-facing plastic packaging. The inputs include the company’s plastic quantity and type by country allowing the model to produce waste management information at the country-specific level. You can learn more about the full ReSource Footprint Tracker methodology here.

Services

  • Conducted a literature review of publicly available data sources on recycling, landfill, incineration, and mismanagement rates for plastics and built a country-level waste management database.
  • Built a model with a tiered output approach (see figure) and developed an assumption methodology for filling in remaining data gaps. The intention is for the model to eventually be converted into a web-based tool for users to input their own data.
  • Facilitated workshops with ReSource members to solicit feedback on the model, answer questions, and check outputs throughout the process.

 

Impacts

The ReSource Footprint Tracker provides data to inform companies where they should focus energy and resources to reduce plastic waste. The initiative provides a unique opportunity for member companies to collaborate and find shared solutions for solving the plastic pollution crisis through research and investments. Following the methodology pilot in 2019, WWF released “Transparent 2020” with the initial baseline findings of five ReSource: Plastic companies.

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