“Bølgen” – Prevention of Consumer Waste

Waste from personal consumption stands as a significant contributor to pollution. In an effort to prevent littering, Hold Norge Rent, Oslofjordens Friluftsråd, and Mepex sought to mobilize the companies behind the brands commonly found in litter to take action.

This initiative marked the beginning of the “Bølgen” project, where, in collaboration with 14 companies, concrete measures were devised to prevent littering.

“Bølgen” is grounded in the knowledge of sources of marine waste as documented in the Dypdykk i plasthavet project (MDIR, 2019). The survey revealed that approximately 30% of the waste in and around the Oslo Fjord originates from personal consumption. The goal was to inspire the companies behind the brands and products frequently found as litter to act in reducing pollution.

The project was a collaboration between Mepex, Hold Norge Rent, and Oslofjordens Friluftsråd, with Grønt Punkt Norge and Infinitum as partners.

A Five-Step Process to Identify the Right Measures

“Bølgen” is structured as a five-step change process. The aim is to develop concrete measures against littering, to be implemented by the businesses themselves:

  1. Knowledge Sharing – acquiring new knowledge about littering and the company’s sustainability efforts
  2. Beach Cleanup and Analysis – cleanup actions led by Oslofjordens Friluftsråd and analysis of the collected waste
  3. Workshop – analysis of the value chain, risk of littering, and preventive measures
  4. Action Package – prioritized measures with a timetable
  5. Implementation – companies implement the measures within their own operations.

Period: 2020 – 2023 Team:
Kathrine Kirkevaag, Hildegunn Bull Iversen, Elise Narum Amland, Jonathan Wegger, Tallak Syversen, Kristiane Rabben
Main contact: Hildegunn Bull Iversen Relevant documents:

Results from “Bølgen” Project:

  • Increased Awareness and Knowledge of Littering: The project contributed to an enhanced understanding and awareness of littering issues.
  • Increased Motivation Among Employees: The initiative resulted in heightened motivation among employees to act against littering.
  • 14 Action Packages with Concrete Plans: Individualized action packages were developed for each participating company, outlining specific plans for tackling littering.
  • Ownership and Recognition of Responsibility: Companies developed a sense of ownership and understanding of their responsibility and impact on addressing littering issues.
  • Design Against Littering – New Project: A follow-up project, “Design mot forsøpling,” was initiated, providing specific recommendations on how packaging can be designed to reduce the risk of littering.

Companies that participated:

  • Ringnes 
  • Orkla Confectionery & Snack 
  • Orkla Health 
  • Orkla Foods 
  • Orkla Home & Personal Care 
  • NorgesGruppen 
  • Unil 
  • Øya 
  • Oslo Pride 
  • Hennig-Olsen is 
  • Mondelez 
  • Essity 
  • Buskerud Storsenter 
  • Starbucks