Circularity as a New Imperative in Plastics Waste Management in Kenya

  • David Walunya Ong’are National Environment Management Authority
  • Anastacia Vyalu National Environment Management Authority
Keywords: Circular Economy, Producer Responsibility Organization, Extended Producer Responsibility, Plastic Pollution, Adaptive Management, Self- Regulation
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Plastics are a major source of pollution in Kenya and present a wicked problem for the country, drawing in several players; the national and county governments, private sector, NGOs and street families each with their own agenda. The government has taken steps to control the plastic pollution problem through recent policy action including a ban on single use plastics and development of regulations. Producers have responded spontaneously through formation of collective Producer Responsibility Organizations to handle delegated extended responsibility over products they introduce into the market throughout the life cycle including the post consumption phase. The objective of the study is to analyse if the Responsibility Organizations are adequately designed to deliver on sustainability objectives in the plastics waste value chains. A case study approach was adopted using a review of secondary data. It is a finding of this study that two voluntary Producer Responsibility Organizations are operational in the plastics sector with commitments towards sustainability that work through member contributions and incentives to plastics waste collectors. A number of enabling policies and legislation are still in Draft form and need to be finalized. Comprehensive data on plastic production remains a challenge to assess the effect of the extended responsibility efforts so far. The plastics waste sector offers opportunity for employment for marginalized groups. Adaptive management practice offers opportunity for self-regulation by plastic producers with minimal government policing. The environmental, social, and governance aspects of the Producer Responsibility Organizations need to be strengthened


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22 October, 2023
How to Cite
Ong’are, D., & Vyalu, A. (2023). Circularity as a New Imperative in Plastics Waste Management in Kenya. East African Journal of Environment and Natural Resources, 6(1), 385-393.