Perception of Plastics in the GCC: A GPCA Study of the Arabian Gulf


Consistently across the 6 countries, most residents couldn’t pin point which plastics can be recycled. Only a modest proportion of GCC residents correctly matched different plastics to their international recycling codes.This 2017 survey, commissioned by the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA), the voice of the petrochemical industry in the Arabian Gulf, has revealed that only 38 percent of GCC residents have an informed view of recyclable and degradable plastics, signaling the need to incorporate more information on this important subject in the education systems across the region. 48% of the 4,076 respondents supported the practice of recycling plastics into new products, rather than resorting to conventional waste disposal. The survey further revealed that the majority of respondents expect government authorities and plastic manufacturers to take the lead in reducing the environmental impact caused by unmindful littering. The respondents expect the GCC authorities to promote more recycling in the region as well as running more educational and awareness campaigns.

Marine Litter Prevention

The survey results will be used to design future marine litter prevention programs and increase recycling in the Arabian Gulf. GPCA’s Waste Free Environment (WFE) campaign, now in it’s fifth year, recently expanded into three new territories, adding the U.S., Australia and Sri Lanka to its global reach. Growing participation in the WFE initiative encompasses 29 companies and thousands of volunteers across 23 cities internationally.

Below are links to additional resources on the study.