CO2logic expands its services to fight against global plastic pollution22-03-2021
Brussels, 16 March 2021 - Last summer, Brussels-based climate consultancy CO2logic launched the Plastic-Neutral® Label. In collaboration with the certification company Vinçotte, they award this label to companies that manage to reduce and compensate their plastic consumption. Today, the company is taking another step forward with the launch of www.plastic-neutral-label.org and a concrete service for the reduction and recycling of plastics. CO2logic has an important goal: to contain and reduce plastic pollution on a global scale and stimulate the circular economy of plastics.
With the launch of the label and its accompanying services, CO2logic is taking a leap forward in helping organizations become plastic neutral. CO2logic aims to achieve this goal through a 4-step method. This method has been used for CO2 neutrality for almost 15 years: the first step consists in calculating the plastic footprint, and then reducing it in the second step. The third step aims at offsetting the irreducible and residual plastic consumption by supporting plastic waste collection and recycling initiatives worldwide. The final step involves honest and transparent communication about the impact of these actions.
Plastic Neutral Label website
On the new website www.plastic-neutral-label.org (beta version), organizations can find information about the label and the certification process, as well as about projects dealing with plastics and plastics-related issues. Through the website, they can also contact the Plastic-Neutral team directly to start working on their plastic footprint and reduction plan. "The challenge of plastic and marine litter in our oceans is so great that immediate action is urgently needed. The Plastic-Neutral approach may not be perfect, but in any case, it will quickly stimulate, finance and accelerate voluntary cleanup and recycling of waste in oceans and rivers in a cost-effective manner," says Antoine Geerinckx, founder of climate consultancy CO2logic.
The need for credible action
The public is becoming increasingly aware of the issue of waste in rivers and oceans. Several CO2logic employees already volunteer with beach and river clean-up actions (with River Clean-Up, Surfrider Foundation...). However, efforts must be intensified to accelerate awareness and action by companies. That's why CO2logic decided in 2020 to expand its services to support organizations that want to work to reduce their plastic use. The climate and environmental consultancy proposes the concept of plastic neutrality to reverse the growing trend of plastic waste. It therefore uses its expertise in environmental assessment to conduct "plastic footprints" and supports its clients in plastic reduction and compensation strategies.
This idea has been put into practice with the launch of the Plastic-Neutral® label. The new label is a guarantee of commitment and transparency, against attempts at greenwashing. The CO2logic calculation method complies with the new standard published in February 2021 by the independent international certification agency Verra and the 3R Initiative. After calculating the client's plastic footprint, the internationally renowned agency Vinçotte performs a verification, allowing CO2logic to guarantee the accuracy and scientific independence of its calculations
"A label like this is an excellent reference for large companies. It is important that all figures are accurate. Too often we see large companies publishing incorrect data in their annual reports," explains Michel Vandegard of Vinçotte. The Plastic Neutral label, on the other hand, shows that companies and organizations are effectively reducing and offsetting their plastic footprint with a measurable goal and thus are not placing this burden on society and marine ecosystems.
One truck per minute
Once clients' major plastic sources are identified, CO2logic's life cycle assessment (LCA) experts guide them in reduction and eco-design strategies for efficient material use. Only after companies have made efforts to reduce and offset their entire remaining plastic footprint can they be awarded the label.
348 million tons of plastic are produced every year and 40% of the waste ends up in the environment or in rivers and oceans, a number which goes up to 80% when it comes to soft and multi-layered plastics. About one truckload of plastic is dumped into the ocean every minute. This has disastrous consequences for fragile ecosystems and human health. The cost to society is estimated at $3,000 to $33,000 per ton of marine plastic per year. "The label is a guarantee that companies take their own responsibility for plastic pollution very seriously. With this compensation, they provide much-needed funding for the collection and recycling of plastic waste worldwide," says Antoine Geerinckx.
Expanding the circular economy of plastic
Informed by nearly 15 years of experience in carbon offsetting, CO2logic sees plastic offsetting as a lever additional to other reduction efforts. CO2logic believes that by putting a price on plastic, organizations are not only incentivized to reduce their consumption in the first place, but it also contributes to efforts to clean up the environment, expand waste management infrastructure and increase the value of recycled plastic. With this initiative, they are growing the circular economy of plastics.
 Geyer, Jambeck, & Law (2017). Production, use, and fate of all plastics ever made. (Production, utilisation et sort de tous les plastiques jamais fabriqués.) Science Advances, 3(7). DOI : 10.1126/sciadv.1700782. https://advances.sciencemag.org/content/3/7/e1700782
 Beaumont et al. (2019). Global ecological, social and economic impacts of marine plastic. (Impacts écologiques, sociaux et économiques dans le monde des plastiques en milieu marin.) Marine Pollution Bulletin, 142. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.marpolbul.2019.03.022
 Systemiq & Pew Charitable Trust. (2020). Breaking the Plastic Wave (Briser la vague plastique) [rapport]. https://www.pewtrusts.org/-/media/assets/2020/07/breakingtheplasticwave_report.pdf