PCX was the first in the world to publish a Standard in March of 2020. The Plastic Pollution Reduction Standard provides a framework for the implementation of a credible and verifiable plastic offsetting program. Our comprehensive approach to solution sets means our network of partners provides a safe and transparent system of physically collecting, transporting, and processing plastic waste to prevent leakage into nature.


We’ve included an easy way to find everything you need to know about getting certified by the Plastic Credit Exchange.

All the certification details.

01: Introduction

Plastic Credit Exchange (PCX) recognizes the decades-long global challenge of plastic waste. According to a report conducted by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), the world produces 300 million tonnes of plastic waste every year. Only 9% of all plastic waste that has ever been produced has been recycled; 12% has been incinerated, while the remaining 79% has accumulated in landfills or the environment—where they can persist for centuries. By the year 2040, the annual flow of plastics going into the ocean may reach up to 29 million tons (three times the current estimates). In a technical note released in November 2021, PCX goes further into estimating what PCX defines as the Global Plastic Debt. By the end of November 2021, the estimated Global Plastic Debt will be over 8 billion tons of plastic that have been produced and remains present in the environment or in circulation which will still need to be cleaned up.

PCX is the world's first global, non-profit, fully integrated plastic offset platform which offers a seamless, traceable and effective solution to offsetting post-consumer plastics responsibly away from landfills and oceans. We're mobilizing businesses in the fight against plastic waste. We help businesses responsibly offset their plastics footprint by reducing the flow of plastic pollution into the environment. Our ultimate goal is to reduce the use of plastics in products and in our lives. We partner with communities in some of the most polluted areas in the world, empowering them to clean up the plastic waste already in their backyards. By feeding a circular economy, we're making a tangible impact on the ground where it matters most. We view plastic offsetting, not as an excuse to pollute, but only as part of a comprehensive solution set for businesses and individuals to take responsibility for the plastic waste that continues to threaten our environment. All stakeholders must do their best to reduce, reuse and recycle plastics whenever and wherever possible.

The Plastic Pollution Reduction Standard (PPRS), along with our processes, constantly evolves to reflect the latest environmentally responsible solutions, government policies, and industry best practices in all the markets we operate in. PCX was the first to publish a standard on plastic waste management as early as March 2020. PCX has since conducted various reviews and revisions that have led to this current version effective January 2022. PCX reviews and publishes the PPRS on a regular basis – refer to the PCX website for the latest version of the standard.

02: Objectives and Guiding Principles

PCX aspires to clean up the Global Plastic Debt which has accumulated over eighty years. We encourage the elimination of all unnecessary plastics and support the responsible production and management of any plastic that remains so that it doesn’t wind up in nature.

The objective of the Plastic Pollution Reduction Standard is to provide a framework for the implementation of a credible and verifiable plastic offsetting program. PCX, through its network of partners, provides a safe and transparent system of physically collecting, transporting, and processing plastic waste to prevent leakage into the environment. Through a fully audited process, PCX translates the weight of Plastic Offsets to the equivalent Plastic Credits registered in our blockchain ledger. Any individual or corporation may purchase Plastic Credits as a means to take responsibility for their plastic waste and achieve their sustainability goals on plastic pollution reduction.

PCX emphasizes that the concept of Plastic Credits is not an excuse for organizations to abandon the reduction of plastics being used in their products. PPRS is rooted in plastic pollution reduction by stopping the flow of plastics in nature while better means of packaging and recycling are being developed. Plastic Credits should be a part of the organization’s comprehensive strategy or a solution set and Plastic Credits should be diminishing over time as more sustainable materials and technologies emerge.


PPRS covers the processes of certifying companies or organizations to be Plastic-Free, Plastic Neutral or Plastic Negative or securing Plastic Credits. For Plastic Neutral applications, PCX awards certification to an Offset Partner that purchases Plastic Credits equivalent to the Offset Partner's Plastic Footprint. The Plastic Credits should be of the same type of plastic or a type that is deemed more harmful for the environment.     

PPRS also provides a way to certify products made up of recycled, post-consumer plastics based on existing and developing international standards such as DIN SPEC 91446 (Classification of recycled plastics by Data Quality Levels for use and (digital) trading), DIN EN 15343:2008-02 (Plastics - Recycled Plastics – Plastics Recycling traceability and assessment of conformity and recycled content) and similar independent party verification.

Materials. Plastic offsetting as defined in the PPRS covers a wide range of plastics that go into the waste stream. These include:

  1. All materials made of the seven types of plastics: Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETE or PET), High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE), Linear Low-Density Polyethylene (LLDPE), Polypropylene (PP), Polystyrene or Expanded Polystyrene (PS or EPS) and Other Plastics (O).
  2. Any of a group of synthetic or natural organic materials, including resins, resinoids, polymers, cellulose derivatives, casein materials, and proteins which include, among others, acrylic or polymethyl methacrylate, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polyamide (nylon), polycarbonate and polylactic acid.

Plastic Credit from Used Tires = Weight of Used Tires * % Synthetic Content

For more information, please refer to PCX Guidance Note 01 Plastic Credits from Used Tires.

3. Composite materials containing the plastics and material types listed above, such as multilayer paper boards with polyethylene and/or aluminium layers.

Aggregation. This includes in scope all informal waste collection activities, community waste collection from the environment, and government or private-led waste collection activities. PCX provides operational guides in the conduct of aggregation across industries.

Processing. As the optimal recovery option for plastic waste depends on many prevailing circumstances, the life-cycle analysis should be applied to decide, depending on the type and composition of the plastic waste and the capabilities and regulations in the respective countries, which options are environmentally more favorable and sustainable. In the case of commingled or composite plastic waste, energy recovery and some feedstock recycling processes will sometimes represent the optimal choice. Plastic waste may be managed utilizing a hierarchical framework comprising life-cycle strategies for prevention and minimization of waste and of its potentially adverse environmental impact as described in ISO 17422. In general, plastic waste processing technologies utilized by PCX partners can be divided into the following classes:

  1. Material recovery (mechanical recycling, chemical or feedstock recycling, and biological or organic recycling).
  2. Energy recovery in the form of heat, steam, or electricity generation using plastic waste as substitutes for primary fossil fuel resources.
  3. Other emerging technologies which are qualified based on PCX’s requirements.

PPRS provides guidance (Appendix 01. Accreditation of Operations Partners)  to ensure that our partner Aggregators and Processors abide by local and international environmental and social requirements for their respective processes. For the example of co-processing plants, the PPRS aligns the requirements of the Technical Guidelines on Environmentally Sound Co-processing of Hazardous Waste in Cement Kilns released by the UN Environment Programme Basel Convention. Similar references will be used based on the type of process covering environmental, social and safeguard systems.

PPRS aligns with the definition of the Asian Development Bank that “incineration” should be distinguished with modern treatment technology that allows for energy or material recovery. The former refers to a process that is done means solely for disposal with no mitigation measure while the latter is conducted as a means to recover energy or materials and should have the appropriate technologies to mitigate adverse impact to the air.

Auditors. PCX works with in-house and industry partners who can provide assurances consistent with the requirements of the PPRS, local regulations and international best practices. PCX reserves the right to qualify Audit Partners who have passed PCX’s due diligence. Partner Auditors also provide a level of verification in the blockchain ledger.

04: Objectives and Guiding Principles

Plastic Reduction Goals are sustainability-driven commitments and actions taken by an individual or business, voluntarily or through compliance, to compensate for the environmental impact of its Plastic Footprint. PPRS is guided by the following principles:

a. Conservativeness - Businesses making claims of Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative status agree to exert their best effort to be as accurate as possible. In cases where this is not feasible, businesses agree to undertake conservative approaches and disclose the methodologies that underlie their claims.

b.    Integrity and Consistency- PCX operates in accordance with third-party verification to ensure that claims of Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative status are applied consistently and appropriately across relevant and intended users of the PPRS.

c.    Transparency and Traceability - PCX shall disclose relevant and sufficient information of stakeholder interest available to the public, making every effort to ensure easy, prompt, and practical access to the appropriate information. The registry is protected by a blockchain ledger – a robust and tamper-proof way to manage every Plastic Credit processed. Once the Plastic Credit is registered on the blockchain ledger, it is considered retired and can no longer be reassigned.

d.    Additionality- PCX targets operations in communities where there is high mismanagement of plastic waste in order to introduce innovative solutions ensuring that any plastic collected finds its way back into the circular economy. During the accreditation of partners, PCX establishes baseline measurements to ensure that any offset volumes claimed are incremental benefits to the status quo.

e.    Continuous Improvement- PCX is committed to regularly reviewing and refining the PPRS for the benefit of the environment and the stakeholders. PCX benchmarks the processes and results to make sure that operations are harmonized and compliant with international industry best practices.

PPRS actively aligns our activities and results with international standards such as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs). This is illustrated as follows:

  •  UN SDG 1: No Poverty - End poverty in all its forms everywhere - PCX partners with communities that provide incremental income from the collection of post-consumer plastics.
  • UN SDG 5: Gender Equality - Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls - PCX implements a community-based post-consumer plastic buy-back program through women micro-entrepreneurs.
  • UN SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities - Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable - Organizations pledge to take responsibility for their Plastic Footprint (fully or partially) through PCX.
  • UN SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production - Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns - PCX provides certification and eco-labelling for qualified partners allowing for the public to choose products that support responsible consumption.
  • UN SDG 14: Life Below Water - Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development - PCX collects post-consumer plastics diverting these plastics away from rivers and oceans.

Further, the PPRS is a means to align with international and industry developments such as the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) policies and adapts the more stringent requirements specific to the existing regulations in the Partner’s respective country. PCX actively works with international organizations, aligns with leading certifications, and with established Industry Working Groups to consolidate language, definitions and positions to drive credibility and adoption of the Plastic Pollution Reduction Standards.

 Guidance from PCX’s Advisory Board is intended to provide country-specific insight where operations already exist and champion sustainability through the crafting of Plastic Credit Exchange policies. More details can be found about each country’s Advisory Board at

05: Plastic Crediting Process

1. Purchasing Plastic Offsets. Offset Buyers may purchase or commit to purchase Plastic Offsets for a defined period. Purchasing Plastic Credits. Offset Partners may purchase or commit to purchase Plastic Credits for a defined period. Assignment of Plastic Credits to the Offset Partner should be specified at the signing of the documentary requirements. This is finalized upon verification of the plastic offsets. A Plastic Credit can be assigned in the name of an individual or an organization. Attribution for a Plastic Credit is done upon verification of the plastic offset.

2. Sustaining Ecosystem. PCX enables a series of activities (aggregation, logistics, and processing) from proceeds in plastic offsetting and crediting. In addition to the cost of operations, PCX allocates a percentage of the funds to the following advocacies:

a.     Education

b.    Infrastructure

c.     Negative Tonnage

3.    Verification. PCX continuously verifies offsets recovered and processed through accredited partners. Verified plastic offsets shall be compared to the baseline measurements for additionality confirmation and remain valid and transactive until the Plastic Credits are used against a company’s Claim (Plastic Neutral / Negative). The validity period is provided to ensure that there is a continuous drive to divert fresh plastic waste from the environment.

4. Certification. PCX shall release a Plastic Credit Certificate to the Offset Partner with corresponding supporting documents. These Certificates and the respective support documents will be published on the blockchain ledger and be accessible to the public.

5. Documentation. Plastic Credits will be issued based on the actual plastic waste recovered and processed through accredited Aggregators and Processors. The quality and quantity of offsets shall be supported by documentation submitted to PCX or our audit partners and shall be incorporated as attachments in the Plastic Credit Certificates. These supporting documents may include but are not limited to the following:

a. Certificate of processing

b. Certificate of pre-treatment

c. Certificate of Environmental Compliance

d. Delivery receipts

e. Calibration records

06: Certification Process

The PPRS is designed to encourage individuals and businesses to refrain from the use of or to take responsibility for their own Plastic Footprint. PCX provides options for individuals and businesses to participate while maintaining a high degree of accountability and transparency.

For businesses, the state of being Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative may be achieved at different levels of an Offset Partner’s operations – at a product level, at a brand level or at the level of the entire company or event.

Product. This is achieved when the plastic footprint that corresponds to all products under a specific product category or sub-range within a company’s portfolio has been matched with equivalent Plastic Credits, bringing the plastic footprint to at least net zero for a defined period. 

Brand. This is achieved when the plastic footprint that corresponds to all products under a specific Brand has been matched with equivalent Plastic Credits, bringing the plastic footprint to at least net zero for a defined period.

Company. This is achieved when the plastic footprint that corresponds to all parts of the company’s operations, including the plastic inputs for producing the products and services, logistics, advertising, promotion and selling, as well as general administrative activities of a company has been matched with equivalent Plastic Credits, bringing the plastic footprint to at least net zero for a defined period. 

Event. This is achieved when the plastic footprint that corresponds to all activities under a specific event (including preparations and clean-up) has been matched with equivalent Plastic Credits, bringing the plastic footprint to at least net zero for the event’s defined period. 

Companies seeking any kind of  Certification shall undertake the following process:

1.Define Scope. The state of being Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative may be achieved at different levels in an Offset Partner’s operations. It is critical that a good baseline measurement is achieved, and the first step is to define the coverage of the operations that will be matched with corresponding Credits. In addition to the level of operations, the Offset Partner must specify the coverage period where the plastic footprint will be calculated from documentation and other pertinent records. The entity applying for Certification must be clearly defined by name with a description of relevant legal and/or geographical boundaries.

In the Plastic Footprint Calculator, PCX provides guidance on accounting for the full life cycle assessment of recycled materials.

Thus, the following calculations shall be applied with the succeeding requirements for Certifications:

For Brands: Retain minimum of 10% of Recycled Packaging due for plastic offsetting

For Manufacturers: Base the Plastic Footprint on raw material inputs

For more information, please refer to PCX Guidance Note 02 PET Recycling Material Analysis for Plastic Credit Treatment.

2.  Measure and Verify Plastic Footprint. Once the Offset Partner has defined the scope of its desired level of Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certification, the Partner assesses its plastic waste impact or plastic footprint. PCX facilitates the computation and assessment, by assisting the organization with the Plastic Footprint Calculator and helps the organization submit its computed Plastic Footprint to a third-party assessor for auditing. The Offset Partner may opt to use other Plastic Footprint Calculation methods (such as EPR Toolkit and the WWF ReSource kit) as long as the minimum requirements of the PCX Plastic Footprint Calculation. The Offset Partner must prepare and gather data needed, and calculate the company, brand, or product’s total Plastic Footprint, defined as all the plastic purchased along the value chain starting upon ownership and receipt of raw materials up until use of product or service by consumers in its intended purpose. The Offset Partner must contract an independent auditor approved by PCX and this assessment partner should understand the full set of data that will be included in its assessment. As their calculation of the plastic footprint underpins the qualification for Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certification, the Offset Partner must provide PCX with a true and certified copy of this audit document.

3.         Secure Plastic Credits (For Plastic Neutral and Plastic Negative Certification only). An Offset Partner covering Product, Brand or Company commits to cover its plastic footprint for a period of three (3) consecutive years.      

The Offset Partner may specify any month as the start of the defined period. The Plastic Offsetting commitment (as part of the Offset Partner’s comprehensive solutions including reduction and recycling) should be based on:

a.    Year 1: Actual Plastic Footprint for the past year

b.    Year 2: Plastic Footprint the current year

c.    Year 3: Plastic Footprint forecasted for the succeeding year

For Offset Partners for Event, the Plastic Credits shall correspond to the total Plastic Footprint including preparation and post-event activities. The Plastic Neutral or Plastic Negative Certification shall only be released once the actual Plastic Footprint has been verified.

The purchased Plastic Credits and supporting documentation shall be published on the blockchain ledger. Re-assessment and verification of the Plastic Footprint will have to be conducted by the Offset Partner every year.

Plastic-Free Partners do not need to secure Plastic Credits but shall submit an audit certification that the Plastic Footprint based on the defined scope and period is zero. Procedures for verification and monitoring shall be agreed by PCX and the Applicant.

4.  Communicate. When an entity qualifies as an official Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certified partner, it is granted rights to the use of the Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certified badge, to signify its action and commitment in its packaging and marketing communications. PCX provides the assets and guidance for applying the Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certified Badge in its packaging and communications. All communications relating to one's Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certification status must be factually based, clear, and transparent. All Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certified partners must publicly disclose their plastic footprint assessments, offsets and other related initiatives on reduction and recycling relating to their Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative certification on blockchain ledger. The use of the Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative badge must conform to the usage terms laid out on Appendix 02. It is the Offset Partner’s responsibility to ensure that their claims are compliant with any local guidelines.

An Offset Partner’s Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative status begins when they are awarded the Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative Certificate by PCX. Failure to comply with the PPRS and agreements with PCX may result in suspension or termination of the Offset Partner’s Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative status and the corresponding legal remedies will apply.

PCX encourages all businesses to achieve a Plastic-Free/Neutral/Negative certification and as such, devises ways for businesses across all sizes to participate in the process with the necessary rigor, accountability, and transparency. Specific guidelines for each type of business are provided in Appendix 03.1 and Appendix 03.2.

07: Safeguard Systems

Environmental Impact and Pollution Prevention. The Operating Partners’ compliance to the PPRS provides assurances that in the process of reducing the plastic waste, there shall be no detrimental impacts to other aspects of the environment. This includes pollution prevention and abatement, biodiversity and marine conservation, management of natural resources and the welfare of the people. Potential impacts and risk assessment shall be conducted by the Operating Partner in all aspects of operations and mitigation measures put in place when necessary.

Occupational Health and Safety. The Operating Partner shall consider the health and safety of the people and properties involved in all stages of operations. The risks inherent to the activities shall be identified and addressed prior to the conduct of the activities from aggregation up to processing. Necessary measures shall be implemented by the Operating Partner to avoid accidents, injuries and diseases arising from or associated to the activities including emergency response and preparedness.

Gender Equality and Social Inclusion. Operations shall not implement any specific activities that constitute any form of discrimination or harassment. The Operating Partner shall observe and promote best practices on gender equality and inclusivity.

Feedback and Grievance Mechanism. PCX recognizes the important role of the stakeholders in the PPRS. Consultations and feedback mechanisms shall be in place and will be available throughout the implementation of the activities. PCX incorporates the views of all the stakeholders in the conduct of the activities and the disclosure of Plastic Credits in the blockchain ledger. Stakeholders and the public may submit their grievances, concerns on the PPRS implementation through email to

Prohibited Materials and Activities. In the conduct of plastic waste collection and processing, the Operating Partners shall not engage the following:

  1. Activities involving forms of forced or child labor.
  2. Activities deemed illegal under international conventions and host country regulations; and
  3. Activities involving toxic and hazardous materials including weapons, munitions, and radioactive materials.




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HOPE was established in 2012 with a mission to provide Filipinos with an easy way to vote with their peso about what was important to them. As an impact company and the Philippines’ first B Corporation, HOPE donates 100% of its profits towards education and has built over 100 public school classrooms around the country. Not wanting to help solve one problem in education while creating another in the environment, in 2018, HOPE put forward the audacious goal to take responsibility for 100% of its plastic footprint making it the first Plastic Neutral bottled water in the country. The brand has since been Certified Plastic Neutral for the past three years and continues to promote the importance of the environment, through plastic credits and its alternative to plastic product packaging, boxed water.


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Since its founding in 1998, Peanut Butter & Co. has been on a mission to deliver products that taste good, feel good, and most importantly, do good. The company ensures social responsibility by supporting nonprofits that undertake nutrition research, improve farmers’ lives, promote healthful lifestyles, and implement global standards for sustainable ingredients. Building on over 20 years of commitment to our planet, Peanut Butter & Co. has become the first Certified Plastic Neutral peanut butter brand globally. Going plastic neutral was an easy decision for the team behind the 100% family-owned business, who have won various awards for championing sustainability practices such as reducing tillage, protecting soil, and conserving water.


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When you sign the Plastic Pollution Reduction Pact, you’ve officially committed to Net Zero Plastic Waste. Aligned with our Plastic Pollution Reduction Standard, it provides the framework for a credible and verifiable plastic offset and credit program.

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