News Editor / International
Toloken has been News Editor/International for Plastics News since 2014. He helps host and produce the Plastics News Radio podcasts, and since late 2016, has handled coverage of politics and policy from a home office near Washington, D.C. From 2008 to 2014, he was a staff reporter for PN in Guangzhou, China, covering the industry throughout Asia. In 2006-07, he lived in Hong Kong and contributed on a freelance basis. From 1997 to 2006, he served as PN's Washington reporter. He is a journalism graduate of the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana. Before joining Plastics News, he worked at the Daily Press in Newport News, Va., and as a freelance journalist for the Chicago Tribune and the Daily Herald in Arlington Heights, Ill.
For the first time in more than 30 years, food wrappers, many made of plastics, have replaced cigarette butts as the most littered item on the world's beaches and waterways, according to an environmental group that coordinates a prominent cleanup.
The industry-funded Alliance to End Plastic Waste and its members have invested at least $400 million of their $1.5 billion commitment in environmental projects since forming early last year, according to a Sept. 2 progress report from the group.
A new report from the Pew Charitable Trusts offers a stark assessment of what will happen to plastic in the ocean without major new action: It will nearly triple by 2040, and all the commitments made so far from government and industry will barely dent that.
The largest consumer product makers and retailers in the U.S. are doing a poor job of making their plastic packaging more responsible and financially supporting efforts to boost recycling, according to a new report from socially responsible investment advisory group As You Sow.
In the wake of China's ban on recyclable plastics, a new industry coalition wants to try to make polypropylene into the next PET and HDPE in the curbside recycling system. It's ambitious project — PP has some of the lowest recycling rates now in plastics packaging and there are economic headwinds — but industry officials say they see opportunities.