Green groups renew demand for plastic waste data from e-commerce firms amid 11/11 sale

November 11, 2021 - 6:41 PM
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Image by Brian Yurasits via Pixabay

Environmental organizations are once again calling on e-commerce companies to reveal the plastic waste they produce amid Singles’ Day shopping festival on November 11

The 11.11 sale or the Singles Day is considered the largest shopping event in Asia and the counterpart of the Black Friday Sale in the United States.

Greenpeace Philippines, along with other environmental organizations, sought to hold leading e-commerce firms in the country, Lazada and Shopee, accountable for the plastic waste they produce through their packaging.

They expressed this call by sharing a comic strip wherein Mara Klima character wished for the e-commerce firms to reduce their plastic waste at 11:11 hour. The Mara Klima comic strip was illustrated by Desiree Llanos Dee and Nityalila Saulo or Tofu Creatives.

“Ikaw, anong wish mo? Help us urge big e-commerce companies like Lazada and Shopee to reduce their plastic packaging waste and protect our beloved planet & communities,”  read the post.

The green group also invited the public to sign their online petition on Bataris platform, headed by the youth group Youth Strike for Climate Philippines.

As of writing, the petition garnered 15,767 signatures of the 20,000 target number.

Waste and pollution watchdog group EcoWaste Coalition also made a separate call through a witty meme it shared on November 10.

“NAKO, NAKO! Paparating na naman ang monthly sale! (face palm emoji) Paalala sa mga bibili ng kanilang Christmas gifts na hindi pa rin nilalabas ng Shopee at Lazada ang data ng plastic packaging waste nila buwan-buwan at pati na rin ang internal mechanisms nila for environmental sustainability! Nakakalungkot, ‘di ba?” its post read.

Online petition

Their collective petition demanded three main changes from the plastic-heavy businesses of Shopee and Lazada:

  1. Reveal – “Corporate accountability and transparency regarding plastic packaging waste.”
  2. Reduce – “The development of policies that ensure the rational reduction of unnecessary plastic packaging.”
  3. Redesign – “Capacitating small- to medium-sized eco-friendly vendors.”

They noted that consumers and sellers are already looking for ways to reduce and recycle their packages.

Large corporations should also do their part in reducing the amount of plastic they produce with their packaging, the petition read.

“As much as consumers are responsible for waste disposal, so too are corporations accountable for the plastic they end up producing, especially unnecessary plastic packaging,” they said.

In a previous briefing last September, Greenpeace cited a Shopify report where consumers around the globe are willing to patronize environmentally-sustainable brands.

The top countries with residents willing to purchase from eco-friendly brands are:

  • China – 67%
  • Australia – 52%
  • Sweden – 46%
  • United States – 42%

In a Business World report, a survey by consulting firm Bain and Company also showed that more Filipinos have a preference for sustainable products than before the pandemic.

In the survey cited, nine out of ten Filipinos are also willing to pay a higher price for products from businesses and brands with ESG (environmental, social and governance) in their policies.