Foley Hoag, GCSE and ACOEL Release New Research on Regulating Plastic Pollution

April 05, 2022

Findings presented at the International Summit on Plastic Pollution

Foley Hoag LLP partnered with the Global Council for Science and the Environment (GCSE) and the American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL) on a collaborative research effort designed to compare French and U.S. legal frameworks for regulating plastic pollution. The results of this analysis will be presented at the International Summit on Plastic Pollution, From Research to Action: Responding to Plastic Pollution through Science, to be held at Long Island University in New York City on April 5-6, 2022.

Foley Hoag attorneys provided legal research and analysis on behalf of its pro-bono client, GSCE (formerly the National Council for Science and the Environment), in collaboration with other lawyers who are ACOEL fellows. Partners Seth Jaffe (Boston) and Carine La Roy-Gliezes (Paris) led the Foley Hoag team and will present the completed research at the Summit.

During a six-month period, a team of international environmental lawyers analyzed the existing policies, regulations, and legislation in France and the United States that directly and indirectly regulate plastic pollution; assessed proposed bills and pending legislation; and developed a comprehensive assessment of how these laws and policies seek to reduce plastic in the environment and contribute to a more circulate economy. The findings aim to inform the implementation of the Resolution to End Plastic Pollution with an internationally legally binding agreement by 2024, a historic collaboration announced in March 2022 between France and the U.S. along with 173 other nations.

“Next to climate change, plastic pollution is the biggest environmental crisis facing our planet today,” said Jaffe, partner and coordinator of the environmental practice group at Foley Hoag. “We applaud the U. S., France and dozens of other countries who recently adopted a global treaty to end plastic pollution. But understanding the historic limitations of our governments in dealing with plastic waste is critical to defining and implementing the best plan to better address current needs. It is our hope that our recent analysis will help accelerate transatlantic collaboration and drive meaningful changes for the environment.”