The Nordic nations are working closely together in a bid to accelerate the region’s shift to a more circular economy.

A new initiative has been launched through the Nordic Council of Ministers, an inter-governmental organisation promoting collaboration between the nations. The Nordic Plastic Programme aims to develop a plastics industry defined by circular processes.

“A change of course is needed at global level in order to reduce the volume of plastic debris and microplastics in the seas. The Nordic programme to reduce the environmental impact of plastic is part of our input into this work to ameliorate the global impact of plastic on the environment. I hope that we will achieve a close working relationship and that between us we will come up with relevant measures,” said the Norwegian climate and environment minister, Vidar Helgesen, who chairs the Nordic Council of Ministers for the Environment in 2017.

It encourages cooperation and dialogue to chart a path towards the production of plastics that are aligned with circular economy principles.

“It is important that the Nordic Region pioneers measures to reduce the environmental impact of plastics. We need to adopt measures that will reduce emissions of microplastics into lakes and sea, so it is important that official Nordic agencies work even more closely together, share information, enhance their knowledge and discuss their experiences,” says the Swedish environment Minister, Karolina Skog.