31 August 2021
The Plastic Credit Exchange (PCX) and the Department of Trade & Industry (DTI), through the Consumer Policy and Advocacy Bureau, signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA) last August 27, 2021, to encourage businesses to take responsibility for their plastic footprints. Present at the signing was DTI Secretary Ramon Lopez, DTI Undersecretary Ruth Castelo and PCX founder and chairwoman Nanette Medved-Po.
The Philippines is infamously the 3rd worst offender of ocean plastic pollution and under this agreement, both parties aim to provide businesses with a means to demonstrate their commitment to ensuring plastic waste does not wind up in nature and inspires the public towards responsible consumption. This MOA is also meant to support the goals of Extended Producer Responsibility legislation which will be addressed in the Senate in the coming session.
PCX provides a variety of aggregating and processing offset options as part of its market-based mechanism, one of which is a Waste-to-Cash program called Aling Tindera. Aling Tindera engages women sari-sari store microentrepreneurs to become sustainability champions in their communities. Their stores serve as collection points for community members to sell post-consumer plastic waste and for Aling Tinderas to be conduits to getting this material back into the circular economy. The assignment of value to plastic waste has created a financial incentive for communities to clean up.
"We look forward to an increasing number of companies and establishments who will soon become plastic neutral and carry the PCX mark or the plastic neutral product badge. We also eagerly anticipate seeing more establishments participating as drop-off points for consumers’ used plastics, and more sari-sari stores taking part in the waste-to-cash incentive scheme for consumers," shared DTI Secretary Lopez.
PCX Founder Medved-Po expressed her gratitude for the endorsement of DTI saying, “The Department of Trade and Industry has always been open to ideas on how to address the plastic pollution crisis. We believe that this global problem requires a solution set which involves all stakeholders - especially the government. We look forward to collaborating with the Consumer Policy and Advocacy Bureau under Undersecretary Ruth and the broader Department through Sec Mon’s leadership."