Global Plastic Policy Reviews

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When referring to any of the results of our analysis and/or its concept and design, please cite us accordingly:
Global Plastics Policy Centre (2022) March A., Salam, S., Evans, T., Hilton, J., Fletcher, S. (editors). Global Plastics Policy Review. Revolution Plastics, University of Portsmouth.

Japan Packaging Recycling Act

View the policy document
Contribution to reducing plastic pollution:
Effectiveness of meeting own objectives:
Strength of evidence: Very Strong Available Evidence
Reviewed under framework: Yes

This policy focuses on packaging and containers and is an Extended producer responsibility based, recycling and refill policy. Municipalities are responsible for implementation and this has led to a lack of consistency and confusion for the public, however 90% of PET bottles are recycled.

The policy has helped to accelerate the reduction of weight for containers and packaging and the introduction of products with no aluminium lining. There are published reduction rates of 60% for plastic packaging, but there has been a decrease in refillable bottles. Recycling rates for PET bottles are very high at 90% but for other plastics are low with a move to incineration rather than landfill. Export of PET waste has also increased significantly.

The act was revised in 2006 to enhanced measures for reducing the use of plastics bags and create a funding mechanism to provide economic incentives to municipalities to perform higher levels of separation of waste packaging and to strengthened punishments and fines against packaging business that do not meet their obligations. Small producers are exempt which reduces the policy effectiveness.

The regulations only cover household waste but has seen excellent levels of separation of waste by households.

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We are confident in our research, however, not all evidence is made publicly available which may affect the outcome of the reviews. Let us know if you have research or evidence that can contribute to our analysis, or a policy you think would be valuable to review!

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Our methods

Through an analytical framework, we've reviewed over 100 plastic policies. These reviews determine the effectiveness of policies in reducing plastic pollution and we offer recommendations in light of this evidence, to enhance future policy making. You can find out more about our methods on our methods page.

Methods

Guidance

In light of our findings, we've created targeted guidance for Policy Makers, Citizens and Businesses.

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We are confident in our research, however, not all evidence is made publicly available which may affect the outcome of the reviews. Let us know if you have research or evidence that can contribute to our analysis, or a policy you think would be valuable to review!

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