The Anglican Church of Southern Africa calls on Ministers of the Environment to sign the Global Plastic Treaty


At its Provincial Synod, the Anglican Church of Southern Africa  passed the following resolution 

  1. Across Southern Africa only 16% of plastic is recycled. The bulk of discarded plastic

ends up in landfill locations, scattered across the countryside, blocking drains or

littering street verges. If not buried or burnt, it finds its way into rivers (due to wind,

littering, improper waste management or overflowing landfills) and eventually into the


  1. It is estimated that eight million metric tons of discarded plastic end up in the ocean


  1. South Africa, the 11th worst plastic polluter in the world, has indicated that the

government is not willing to sign the draft Global Plastic Treaty, proposed by United

Nations Environment Programme (UNEP);

  1. Provincial Mothers’ Union passed a resolution in Lesotho (2015) to ban polystyrene at

parish events;

  1. Informal waste pickers play an important role in recycling waste;


Acknowledging that:

  1. The practice in some rural communities is that families bring their own dishes to parish

events from home;

  1. To us as people of faith, the well-being of the planet is more important than short term

financial gain;


Resolves to:

  1. Call for a ban of the use of polystyrene at all church events and requests that

representatives of the executive of each Provincial organisation have a discussion

about the implementation of this ban and that ACSA Environmental Network prepares

posters with information for churches;


  1. Respectfully request the Archbishop to write to the Ministers of the Environment (or the relevant office) in each of the countries within ACSA (South Africa, Lesotho, Eswatini and Namibia) , encouraging them to sign the Global Plastic Treaty, and encourages the bishops of IAMA (Mozambique and Angola) to consider doing the same.


  1. Recommend that where waste pickers service urban communities, Anglican

households should separate their waste to help uphold the dignity of the waste pickers.



Proposer: Lulama Ntuta

Seconder: Maria Van Staden

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