French yogurt maker and bottled water Danone is being delivered to court docket by three environmental teams accusing it of failing to adequately scale back its plastic footprint.
Each teams stated the corporate behind Evian and Volvic mineral water had didn’t carry out its duties to function underneath pioneering French legislation.
The 2017 “responsibility of vigilance” legislation mandates monitoring human rights and environmental issues inside massive French firms and their provide chains. It’s more and more being utilized by NGOs in opposition to multinational firms, as a part of a rising development of local weather litigation.
Danone has been named, together with Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Nestle, as one of many world’s prime 10 plastic polluters, in response to Model audit in December.
Rosa Pritchard, lawyer Earth shopper“Danone is transferring ahead and not using a critical plan to deal with the plastic, regardless of the clear concern of local weather, well being and client specialists, and the authorized obligation to confront the issue,” stated one of many teams taking the motion. She added that the corporate’s obligatory “Vigilance Plan”, itemizing the corporate’s environmental and social impacts, was “fully silent on plastics”.
Danone has denied the accusation. We’re very stunned by this accusation, which we strongly refute. Danone has lengthy been acknowledged as a pacesetter in environmental threat administration, and we stay totally dedicated and decided to behave responsibly.
“We’re implementing a complete framework of actions aimed toward lowering plastic use, creating reuse, selling assortment and recycling schemes, and creating various supplies. We have now already made important progress on every of those fronts, significantly by way of plastic discount, for instance. , with a decline of 12% globally (60,000 tons in absolute phrases) between 2018 and 2021.”
She stated ending plastic air pollution can not come from one firm, and requires the mobilization of all actors, public and business. “This is the reason we’re in favor of adopting a legally binding worldwide treaty, underneath the auspices of the United Nations,” Danon stated.
The lawsuit, one in all a number of current authorized actions focusing on plastic pollution, was filed on the Paris Judicial Court docket this week. Surfrider, ClientEarth, and Zero waste FranceThey stated they needed the corporate to just accept accountability for its use of plastic.
“We wish Danone to republish its obligatory responsibility of care report and particularly account for plastic use, together with a concrete technique to scale back it,” stated Antidia Citores, spokesperson for Ocean Advocates. Surfrider Europe Basisto Reuters.
In September, the teams formally notified Danone, giving the corporate the chance to right its “vigilance plan”. The corporate responded to the official notification letter, however the NGO argues that the response was inadequate and didn’t adequately tackle its claims.
The French legislation was launched after the 2013 Rana Plaza catastrophe in Bangladesh, during which 1,100 folks had been killed within the collapse of a clothes manufacturing facility utilized by Western style manufacturers. The dearth of accountability for manufacturers has led to strain from human rights teams and others to marketing campaign for extra company duty.
Danone is current in 120 nations, together with Indonesia and Turkey, which obtain a lot of the West’s plastic waste. Danone It has topped Indonesia’s plastic pollutant model audit ranking for the previous three years.
ClientEarth stated Danone yearly makes use of greater than 74 instances the burden of the Eiffel Tower in plastic. In 2021, it used 750,000 tons, greater than the 716,500 tons utilized in 2020, in response to its 2021 monetary report.
The teams are calling on judges in a civil court docket in Paris to power the corporate to challenge a brand new plan inside six months that features phasing out plastics.
The case is one in all a number of authorized circumstances introduced by NGOs following a landmark worldwide settlement to stem the rising tide of plastic waste. In March 2022, world leaders agreed to place in place a legally binding treaty over the following two years that might cowl the complete life cycle of plastics from manufacturing to disposal.
Solely 9% of plastic waste It’s by no means recycled. Plastics are troublesome to recycle, sluggish to decompose, costly and polluting to incinerate; It breaks down into small and widespread particles that enter the meals chain and trigger hurt to animals.
Over the previous seven a long time, plastic manufacturing has risen from 1 million tons in 1950 to 460 million tons in 2019, and is anticipated to triple by 2060. Most waste results in landfills, in incinerators, or seeps into the setting, in response to to me Group for Financial Cooperation and Growth.
Danone stated it’s dedicated, by 2025, to reusing, recycling or composting plastic packaging.