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Ant Group unveils "Fight Plastic for Nature" Action Initiative at COP28

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In a pivotal move to address plastic pollution and promote nature conservation, the Ant Forest Foundation, established by Ant Group and its affiliates, today announced the launch of the "Fight Plastic for Nature" Action Initiative. The initiative was announced during the 28th Conference of the Parties (COP28) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Dubai, United Arab Emirates at the IUCN Pavilion. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) will provide tools and standards to measure the reduction in plastic pollution and its positive impact on biodiversity. Additionally, the IUCN will share and promote best practices in plastic emission reduction across the plastic life cycle.

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During COP28, Ant Group unveiled Fight Plastic for Nature Action Initiative with partners at IUCN Pavilion on Dec.1, 2023 in Dubai, UAE (Photo: Business Wire)

The initiative aims to rally global efforts in reducing plastic pollution, safeguarding the environment, and fostering sustainable practices. Key objectives include setting active plastic reduction goals, fostering a green consumption ecosystem, and innovating incentive mechanisms to encourage more public participation in reducing plastic pollution. The initiative emphasizes leveraging digital methods to enhance public awareness and create exemplary cases to inspire global action in reducing plastic pollution and protecting the environment. It will also contribute to meeting United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

The initial group of brand partners joining the “Fight Plastic for Nature” Action Initiative include over 30 well-known brands such as Ele.me, InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), Mengniu, RT-Mart, Starbucks and Unilever.

According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), over 430 million tonnes of plastic are produced globally each year, two-thirds of which are short-lived products that soon become waste.1 A study also predicted that by 2040, plastic pollution entering the ocean every year will triple to 29 million tonnes.2

The “Fight Plastic for Nature” Action Initiative is an important step forward in our ongoing efforts to address plastic pollution in our ocean,” said Dr Grethel Aguilar, IUCN Director General. “IUCN welcomes this initiative. We need collaborative efforts to tackle one of the most pressing issues of our time and to drive positive change that benefits nature and humanity.”

"From Day One, we have been following the principle of being open and collaborative when it comes to facilitating green development,” said Sabrina Peng, Chief Sustainability Officer of Ant Group. “Leveraging the capabilities of the fintech platform to connect consumers with our partners, and working with IUCN standards and tools, we look forward to driving meaningful changes in the global fight against plastic pollution.”

In 2016, Ant Group launched the Ant Forest green mini-program on the Alipay app. The green mini-program rewards its users with “green energy points” each time they make a choice to reduce their emissions, such as paying for a bus ride electronically, going paperless and ordering sustainable products from Ant Forest’s partner e-commerce platforms. Users can then apply to convert these green energy points into a virtual tree in the Ant Forest mini-program, which Ant Group matches by making donations to environmental organizations to plant a real tree in areas suffering from deforestation in China. Later on, Ant Group launched Ant Forest | Fantastic Ocean in June 2022, expanding the environmental use cases for users to participate in biodiversity conservation and marine conservation projects. Additionally, Ant Group’s Green Energy Initiative invites brand partners to offer green energy points in Ant Forest and other consumer perks as incentives for consumers to take green actions in everyday life. As of August, 2023, over 600 brands have joined Ant Group’s Green Energy Initiative.

About Ant Forest Foundation

The Ant Forest Foundation, established by Ant Group and its affiliates, is a non-public foundation actively involved in collaborative conservation initiatives. Through partnerships, the foundation contributes to a diverse array of efforts including ecological protection and restoration, ecological education, and environmental research.

About IUCN

Created in 1948, IUCN is now the world’s largest and most diverse environmental network, harnessing the knowledge, resources and reach of our more than 1,400 Member organisations and 15,000 experts. This diversity and expertise make IUCN the global authority on the status of the natural world and the measures needed to safeguard it.

1https://www.unep.org/technical-highlight/fishing-nets-double-edged-plastic-swords-our-ocean
2https://www.science.org/doi/10.1126/science.aba9475

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Contact information

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Ant Group
Zhumei Wang
zhumei.wzm@antgroup.com

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