Single-use disposable plastic is the greatest obstacle to sound waste and resource management. Inadequate waste management systems and human negligence are often cited as the main contributors to plastic waste leakage into terrestrial and marine environments—but waste and brand audit data in many parts of the world are helping reveal that the unfettered production of disposable plastic is the actual problem. As long as the mass production of throwaway plastics continues unabated, cities and countries will find it harder and harder to cope. Put simply, disposable plastic is a pollution problem, and the only way to prevent it is to stop it at source.
This report compiles data from 21 waste assessments conducted in six cities and seven municipalities across the Philippines by GAIA member Mother Earth Foundation and local government project partners, with the support of GAIA and funding from the Plastic Solutions Fund. Data from these 21 waste assessments were used to extrapolate national data, including estimates about the use and disposal of different types of plastic residuals. Among the 21 sites where waste assessments were conducted, 15 sites have additional brand audit data. These data provide a snapshot of how much plastic waste, particularly those with branded packaging, are discarded by households.