UPSTREAM works to develop and scale innovative solutions to plastic pollution.

Today we use plastic - a material designed to last forever - for products designed to last a couple of minutes. Things like plastic bags, styrofoam, cups and lids and straws, to-go containers, single-serve food wrappers, chip bags and beverage pouches. And no matter where you look in the world, we see these same types of products everywhere in the environment. And when you think about the compounded actions of billions of people using these disposable products every single day - it’s a staggering amount of plastic garbage and it’s wreaking havoc with the planet and our health.

“UPSTREAM has brought critical strategic thinking, policy expertise, and collaborative leadership to the growing movement to address plastic pollution.”
— Marcus Eriksen, 5 Gyres Institute

We believe there’s a better way - where we get what we want without all the waste. Where people take pride in the steps they and their community have taken to reduce throw-away packaging. Where businesses partner with community leaders to provide healthy, nutritious food served in reusable cups and containers. Where we have way more fun innovating new ways of experiencing and delivering the bounty of human creativity than the limited throw-away model that stifles our imagination. More than anything, it’s a world in which everything we create is kind — to the Earth, and to one another. This is the future UPSTREAM is working to bring to life.

We work with non-profit, government and business leaders to scale up innovative solutions to plastic pollution. By engaging business, non-profit organizations, scientists & policy-makers, UPSTREAM works to reduce the amount of disposable plastic polluting our planet & impacting our health. We believe the solutions are often found upstream with the companies that design, produce and profit from environmentally harmful products.