Maria Ivanova, Northeastern’s new director of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, wants a future in which her students and their children aren’t mired in plastic products and refuse.
As a member of the Rwanda delegation to the United Nations Environment Assembly, she is helping move the world in that direction.
In March, representatives from 175 countries meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, passed a resolution to start negotiations on a historic, legally binding, cradle-to-grave international treaty to end plastic pollution by 2040.
Ivanova, who traveled to Nairobi as part of the Rwanda delegation that successfully advocated for the resolution, says the treaty would rival the Paris Agreement and Montreal Protocol in environmental importance.
“This is the next big thing in global environmental (protection),” Ivanova says. “This is significant.”