Siegwerk joins Project STOP to combat plastic pollution in Indonesia
Thursday 30. July 2020 - By becoming a strategic partner of Project STOP, Siegwerk actively supports the creation of sustainable waste management systems in Indonesia to eliminate leakage of plastics into the environment underlining its strong commitment to actively drive the realization of a global circular packaging industry.
Siegwerk, one of the leading global providers of printing inks for packaging applications and labels, becomes a strategic partner of Project STOP, a frontline initiative, co-founded by Borealis and SYSTEMIQ, that designs, implements and scales circular economy solutions to marine plastic pollution in Southeast Asia. Since its launch in 2017, Project STOP has welcomed various industrial and governmental partners designing, implementing, and scaling circular economy solutions to prevent plastic waste pollution. Siegwerk is now joining this strong network of system relevant players that are committed to support the establishment of on the ground solutions in Indonesia.
Every year, roughly 12 million tons of plastic waste end up in the ocean impacting community health, wealth and polluting the environment. An estimated 50% of marine debris originates from just five Asian economies: China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Thailand. With an annual consumption of more than 6 million tons of plastic and an estimated ocean leakage of 1 million tons per year, Indonesia is the second largest contributor to ocean plastics. In response, the Indonesian government has created a Marine Debris Action Plan in 2017 committing itself to reduce Indonesia’s ocean plastic levels 70% by 2025. Project STOP has four core objectives; zero leakage of waste into the environment; creating more circular systems; achieving economic sustainability; and benefits to local community via creation of new jobs and reducing impact of mismanaged waste on public health, tourism and fishers.
The initiative works hand in hand with local municipalities and environmental agencies to contribute to developing a low cost and circular waste management infrastructure through city partnership projects across Indonesia. “We strongly believe that creating a circular economy is the solution to today’s global waste problem and we see it as our responsibility as global player to actively support its realization”, explains Alina Marm, Head of Circular Economy Hub at Siegwerk. “As strategic partner of Project STOP, we are now able to deliver on our commitment in a way that empowers local communities by building a circular system to successfully tackle the very real and immediate problems of plastic waste pollution. The initiative’s overall goal is to increase recycling rates, achieve zero ocean leakage and create social benefits for local communities. It combines a rapid acceleration of waste management systems at city level with system level policy, investment, behavior change and innovation in material design approaches. By joining Project STOP we have the exciting opportunity to be an active part of a system-changing “impact” initiative concretely supporting areas with minimal to no waste management services and high plastic leakage rates by building infrastructures, empowering circular processes and encouraging behavior change”, adds Ralf Hildenbrand, President Americas and Member of the Board.
Indonesia plays an important role for Siegwerk as the country is home of numerous employees and customers. With one site in Tangerang and one blending center in Surabaya, the company knows about the challenges across the country. Today, Project STOP supports three cities in Indonesia with extremely high ocean plastic leakage levels: Muncar, a coastal fishing community in Banyuwangi, Pasuruan, a coastal city located in Java, Indonesia’s fourth largest island (and only 70 km from Siegwerk’s blending center in Surabaya), and Jembrana, located on the northwest coast of Bali.
To date, more than 55,000 people already benefit from waste collection, most for the first time. Project STOP has collected nearly 5,000 tons of waste (650 tons of plastic) and created more than 90 full-time jobs. Through its work in Muncar, Pasuruan and Jembrana, Project STOP will reach up to 450,000 people and prevent 40,000 tons of waste 4,700 tons of plastic waste) from leaking into the environment annually, grow local employment and provide replicable solutions and innovations for other cities.
“We firmly believe that a complex issue like ocean pollution can only be tackled through partnerships along the value chain, explains Alfred Stern, Borealis CEO. “Having Siegwerk as a strategic partner of Project STOP will help accelerate the successful delivery and expansion of our city-partnerships in Indonesia and provide a foundation for further actions in the region.”
“Together with Borealis, we are thrilled to welcome Siegwerk to our committed group of strategic partners, which includes the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nestlé , the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, and Borouge,” said Joi Danielson, Asia Programme Director and Partner at SYSTEMIQ. “Their commitment to ending ocean plastic pollution will benefit cities and the communities where Project STOP works.”
As a family-run company with an extensive history, Siegwerk has long been aware of its responsibility to future generations and is strongly committed to always maintain a sensible balance between ecological, social and economic needs without compromising the resources of future generations. Sustainability means progress to Siegwerk. That is why the company is making every effort to actively push its strategic transformation towards becoming a circular and digital packaging solutions company by continuously improving the ecological footprint of its business and its solutions concretely supporting the establishment of a circular economy approach across the packaging industry. Its partnership with Project STOP is just another example of the company’s extensive activities to further shape the future of sustainable packaging. Today, Siegwerk already has a strong track record in customer-specific development projects for circular packaging solutions that either increase recyclability, allow composting, or reduce the need for plastic use and other non-renewable raw materials. With its functional and technical understanding of inks and varnishes combined with its strong partner network and integrated know-how along the packaging value chain, Siegwerk is well equipped to support its customers towards a more circular model. Moreover, the company is actively joining forces along the entire value chain contributing its ink expertise to different industry initiatives like e.g. CEFLEX or the Circular Economy Initiative Deutschland (CEID) to help realize a sustainable future.