Closing the Loop: Scaling up Innovation to Tackle Marine Plastic Pollution in ASEAN Cities

This Action aligns with the following Calls to Action from the Circular Economy Action Agenda for Plastics 

6. Set-up functioning collection systems 

7. Strategically plan sorting and recycling facilities in compliance with trade regulations 



Closing the Loop seeks to reduce the environmental impact of cities in ASEAN countries by addressing plastic waste pollution and leakages into the maritime environment. This project aims to make municipal plastic waste management processes more circular, to increase the rate of recovery and reduce the leakage of plastics into the marine environment. 



To support the achievement of this goal, this project has (1) developed an innovative digital tool to assist local governments in ASEAN countries to monitor and visualize plastic waste leakage and (2) engaged a cluster of ASEAN cities across a coastal basin or watershed area to develop joint actions plans, policies and bankable strategies to address marine plastic litter. Closing the Loop is accelerating action on plastic waste in ASEAN countries and sharing these commitments through relevant regional intergovernmental fora. 

The project ran until April 2021 and built a foundation for future collaboration. From April 2021 onwards, the knowledge gained in the pilot cities is helping to generate funding opportunities to expand the approach in the region and research plastic waste streams and their impacts. 



IGES and the Japan Ministry of Environment, UN ESCAP, Local governments in South East Asia, ASEAN and other partners, UOL, NGOs, universities and academic institutions