7 May 2020, 4-6 pm CEST, online
In November 2019, the Heinrich Böll Foundation and the Break Free From Plastic movement published the international English edition of the Plastic Atlas. It highlights the scale of the plastic crisis, and the global impacts of plastic production, consumption and disposal on other key global challenges such as human health and climate change.
Whereas awareness about the plastic waste disposal problem has risen, the connection between plastics and climate change still requires special clarification. The web conference “Fracking, plastics and the climate” therefore focuses on the starting point of plastic production: the extraction of fossil fuels. With regard to the planned expansion of Ineos in Antwerp, the connection between fracking and plastic from a transatlantic perspective is highly topical. In the framework of the European Commission’s overarching strategy of the European Green Deal, the first proposals on the climate law and the circular economy action plan were presented in March and the European Commission plans to publish a strategy to tackle methane emissions in May. With regard to the Covid-19 pandemic, it is also important to address the fracking-plastic-climate nexus in order to meet climate, environmental and circular economy goals. The effects of the pandemic will be discussed, as the sharp decline in the oil price reveals the structural difficulties of the fracking industry.
Agenda and speakers
- 4:00 pm Welcome by Lisa Kuch, Heinrich-Böll-Foundation European Union, Brussels
- 4:05 pm Opening remarks by Jutta Paulus (Greens/EFA) and Martin Hojsik (Renew), Members of the European Parliament
- 4:10 pm The big picture: natural gas and climate change by Prof. Robert Howarth
- 4:30 pm Climate change impacts of plastics by Steven Feit, representative from the Center for International Environmental Law
- 4:45 pm Fracking for plastics and the transatlantic supply chain of Ineos by Andy Gheorghiu, representative from Food and Water Action Europe
- 4:55 pm The global movement against the expansion of petrochemicals seen from the Global South by Von Hernandez, representative from Break Free From Plastic
- 5:05 pm Panel discussion with Q&A from participants