Plastics are frequently criticized for everything from their toxicity to their contributions to ocean pollution, but they play an important role in enhancing use efficiencies and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

Multiple environmental factors should be considered in material selection. This white paper prepared by McKinsey, examines the total GHG contribution of plastics versus its alternatives, including product life cycle (cradle to grave) and impact of use, but does not consider ocean pollution, which needs to be addressed separately. The objective is to contribute to the dialogue on material choice and broaden the available fact base for the evolving discussion around plastics.

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McKinsey & Company
McKinsey & Company

McKinsey & Company McKinsey & Company is a global management consulting firm, deeply committed to helping institutions in the private, public, and social sectors achieve lasting success. For more than 90 years, our primary objective has been to serve as our clients’ most trusted external adviser. With consultants in more than 100 cities in over 60 markets, across industries and functions, we bring unparalleled expertise to clients all over the world. We work closely with teams at all levels of an organization to shape winning strategies, mobilize for change, build capabilities, and drive successful execution.

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Climate Impact of Plastics

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