Durbanites Against Plastic Pollution (DAPP)
The problem with plastic and a throw away society
The production and consumption of plastic packaging derived from fossil fuel has exploded in the last decade. A mountain of scientific evidence has now confirmed that society’s addiction to plastic has created an environmental disaster never seen before. By 2050 it is predicted that there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean and over 90% of sea birds will have ingested plastic. Birds, fish and mammals are being poisoned and entangled by plastic and other pollutants they absorb. Plastic is now found in seafood that we eat. This terrible injustice to future generations and planet Earth needs to be urgently addressed. The current response has sadly been woefully inadequate in mitigating the crisis. A quantum leap is required to change our economic system to one that is circular and kinder to the environment and health.
As a coastal city with a population over 3.5 million people, Durban faces most pollution challenges faced globally. Litter and dumping are commonplace, weak collection systems characterise impoverished areas, the city has an undeveloped recycling culture and a number of polluted rivers and waterways enter the sea.
We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. Albert Einstein
Fortunately there are a number of evidence-based solutions locally and from around the world that have been designed and at various stages of implementation, from ambitious ocean clean-up projects, new markets for recycled packaging, powerful citizen campaigns, forward-looking policy and economic instruments and the design of green packaging products.
The mission of the Durbanites Against Plastic Pollution (DAPP) is to tap into local and international best practice - driven by the latest evidence for impact – to advocate and practically demonstrate solutions to Durban and South Africa’s plastic and packaging pollution challenges. The DPaPP campaign is driven by an alliance of stakeholders who are committed to achieving its goals.
DAPP aims to empower more people and organizations to take action to stop plastic pollution. It seeks to showcase effective prevention and pollution control measures at individual, community and city-wide levels.
DAPP’s vision is a city that is free of plastic, micro-plastic and other packaging pollution; that demonstrates world-class waste management and a circular economy and that provides pro-poor work opportunities in the green economy.