Hamburg and 20 major European cities signed Thursday (October 24, 2019) a declaration to fight plastic waste at the Eurocities conference in Oslo. The declaration has been draw up by the Eurocities network and the City of Oslo, which is the 2019 European environmental capital. The signatories have pledged to lead by example and to develop local strategies to reduce plastic waste. Their overall aim is to encourage businesses and industry to view disposable plastics as sustainable products and to raise public awareness of the issue. Oslo, Copenhagen, Helsinki, Porto, Florence and Turin are among the other signatories to the agreement.
Hamburg setting good example
Hamburg has campaigned against plastic waste with ongoing running projects long before signing the declaration. Jens Kerstan, Senator for Environment and Energy, remarked: “I am pleased that Hamburg is among those committed to the reduction of plastic products. As large individual customers, public administrations can play a leading role by buying sustainable alternatives and dispensing with plastic products.”
The Ministry for the Environment has been fighting growing mounds of waste with the Kehr.Wieder-Aktion for years and encourages the use of reusable coffee-to-go cups. Guidelines for big, sustainable events including reusable requirements and avoiding plastic waste are being developed with the Green Events network. The Futur 2 Festival has proven that the idea of a low-waste festival works. The guideline for environment-friendly procurement (Leitfaden für umweltfreundliche Beschaffung) has created ecological criteria for public purchases and a ban on disposable plastic bottles. Stadtreinigung has launched various campaigns to highlight its efforts to avoid waste using the Zero-Waste-App.