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Fourth Session of Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee to Develop International Legally Binding Instrument on Plastic Pollution

MAY 6, 2024 — From April 22-29, 2024, over 2,500 participants—representing 170 governments as well as stakeholders from nongovernment organizations, academia, the private sector, the United Nations, and other international organizations—met in Ottawa, Canada, for the fourth session of the Intergovernmental Negotiating Committee (INC-4) to continue negotiations towards a new international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution.

During the meeting, delegates considered a ‘Revised Draft Text’ of the international agreement, ensuring all country views were represented throughout the document and undertook line by line negotiations to begin refining the treaty language. The draft text includes provisions to address plastic pollution throughout the plastics lifecycle to reduce impacts on human health and the environment.

Significant progress was made advancing the text at INC-4.The last scheduled negotiating session will be held from Nov. 25 to Dec. 1, 2024, in Busan, Republic of Korea. Prior to that, and to continue critical momentum, delegates at INC-4 agreed to intersessional work that will consider financing aspects of the agreement for implementation, chemicals and products of concern, and product design for recyclability and reusability.

NOAA attendance at INC-4 was led by Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Affairs, Susan Ruffo, and joined by staff from NOAA’s Office of International Affairs, NOAA General Counsel and the NOAA Marine Debris Program within the Office of Response and Restoration. The United States delegation includes representatives from across the U.S. government and is led by the Department of State.

Last updated Friday, May 10, 2024 1:56pm PDT