Global Plastics Outlook

Global plastics production has grown relentlessly in recent decades. Plastics help us preserve food, insulate constructions, use electronics and make vehicles more fuel-efficient, among other things. Yet, the sheer magnitude of plastics consumption in our societies results in a high production-related carbon footprint, high volumes of waste, persistent pollution and harm to wildlife and ecosystems.


In recent years, growing awareness of ubiquitous plastic pollution has steered public opinion and paved the way for stronger policy intervention on this front. The OECD report Global Plastics Outlook: Economic Drivers, Environmental Impacts and Policy Options seeks to inform and support these efforts.

In focus

Report and Data

The first of two reports, the Global Plastics Outlook is the first report to comprehensively take stock of current plastics production, use and waste generation, uncover the underlying economic drivers and map the related environmental impacts on a global level. The report also identifies four key levers that are essential to bend the plastics curve: markets for recycled (secondary) plastics, technological innovation in plastics, domestic policy measures and international co-operation, including international financing.


Cover Policy Highlights Global Plastics Outlook ENG

The Policy Highlights provides a summary of the key findings and messages presented in the Global Plastics Outlook, alongside some of the most important charts and figures.

This interactive data dashboard provides a snapshot on the full lifecycle of plastics across the world: production, use, waste generation, waste management, waste generation and waste management, including waste that is mismanaged or leaked to the environment.

More resources

Browse other OECD reports, Policy briefs and Working papers related to plastics.