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HP Collaborating To End Ocean-Plastic Pollution

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HP has joined the NextWave Coalition, a consortium of worldwide businesses committed to scaling the use of ocean-bound plastics by developing a global network of ocean-bound plastics supply chains.

This week, HP announced that 12 million plastic bottles collected in Haiti are being upcycled into new Original HP ink cartridges—that’s more than 550,000 pounds (250 tonnes) of plastic material that won’t be spilling into the Caribbean Sea.

This milestone accomplishment comes just two years after we announced that we were joining the First Mile Coalition to clean up plastic waste and create economic opportunity for the people of Haiti. Haiti is the poorest country in the western hemisphere. It continues to recover from a catastrophic 7.0 earthquake that hit the country in 2010, as well as smaller quakes (including a 5.9 quake earlier this month) and several severe weather events. With limited access to clean water, Haitians rely on bottled water. Because proper disposal methods aren’t in place, plastic bottles litter the country’s land, canals, and shoreline—eventually finding their way into the Caribbean Sea.

The addition of HP, along with new member Ikea, to the NextWave Coalition will be formally announced at the fifth annual Our Ocean Conference, Oct. 29-30 in Bali, Indonesia, where my colleague, Ellen Jackowski, will be speaking.

Through our work and partnerships in Haiti, we’ve proven an ocean-bound plastics supply chain is feasible—and we’ve learned many lessons along the way. Joining the NextWave consortium is one way we can help other companies benefit from our experience, and to learn from others in return. This enables all of us to scale more quickly.

Our Chief Supply Chain Officer Stuart Pann describes it this way: “While HP has already demonstrated our commitment to sustainable impact by eliminating ocean-bound plastics and reusing them in our products, we firmly believe in the power of collaboration. We have a responsibility to take the critical steps necessary to reduce plastic pollution. Collaboration within and between industries is one of those critical steps.”

Solving ocean-bound plastic is fully within mankind’s control. By working together to create innovative new supply chain models, like the recycling program in Haiti, and openly sharing learnings and experience with others, both inside and beyond our industry, we can close the ocean-bound plastics tap for good.

Watch our new film, Oceans of Plastic, and visit www.hp.com/sustainableimpact to learn more about HP Planet Partners and our plastic bottle recycling program in Haiti. Follow our progress at www.twitter.com/hpsustainable as we work to #BeatPlasticPollution.