U.S. weakens first global commitment on curbing single-use plastics

Nations made their first global commitment towards curtailing the surging consumption of single-use plastics on Friday, but critics said it failed to confront the planet's pollution crisis with the United States blocking efforts for more radical action.

After five days of talks in the Kenyan capital, ministers at the United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA) agreed to curb items like plastic bags, bottles and straws over the next decade as part of moves aimed at creating a more sustainable planet.

"We will address the damage to our ecosystems caused by the unsustainable use and disposal of plastic products, including by significantly reducing single-use plastic products by 2030," said a ministerial declaration at the end of the summit.

Countries would "work with the private sector to find affordable and environmentally friendly alternatives," it added.

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