Sustainable Investment Awards 2023

ESG assessment tool of the year - investment decisions and insights: The Plastics Circularity Investment Tracker

The Circulate Initiative's Plastics Circularity Investment Tracker provides insights related to private investments in plastics circularity solutions across emerging markets.

The tool seeks to provide greater transparency on private capital flows in order to facilitate investment opportunities and financing mechanisms that support actions to address plastic pollution.

Umesh MadhavanUmesh Madhavan, research director at The Circulate Initiative, commented: "While there is increased global attention on the plastic waste crisis, financing directed towards circular solutions to address the challenge is inadequate. More capital is needed; however, investors and financial decision-makers lack the tools and data to better assess the opportunities.

"We developed the Plastics Circularity Investment Tracker to address this critical knowledge gap, with the objective of facilitating a better understanding of the investment landscape and growth opportunities in the circular economy."

The tool allows users to filter data based on geography (spanning emerging economies in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Caribbean), solution (upstream and downstream products and services such as alternative materials, refill/reuse models, operational platforms, digital mapping, recycling, and recovery services), and investment category, to reveal previously hard-to-determine insights about private capital flows in plastic circularity.

The tool covers more than 400 deals across 38 countries and $4.1 billion of investments for the period of January 2018 to September 2022, according to The Circulate Initiative.

Within a month following its launch in March 2023, The Circulate Initiative says the tracker was used by close to 300 users, made up of institutional and private investors, government bodies, corporates, and academia.

Looking ahead, a biannual update of the Plastics Circularity Investment Tracker is planned, with updates to the data and geographical scope.

Madhavan added: "We are thrilled to receive this award from Environmental Finance. We hope the recognition raises further awareness of the urgency to mobilise capital to fill the financing gap in the plastics circular economy and address this pressing environmental challenge."

The Circulate Initiative is a non-profit organisation that seeks to help solve the ocean plastic pollution problem and build circular and equitable economies across emerging markets.