New video summarizes ‘Play it Out’ festival to Beat Plastic Pollution

New York, 16 September – As the President of the UN General Assembly for the 73rd Session, Maria Fernanda Espinosa, wraps up her 1-year term in office, a new video reflects on her concrete and lasting legacy: a global campaign to beat plastic pollution.

The Campaign, launched in December 2018 with the Governments of Antigua and Barbuda, and Norway, as well as supported by groups such as UN Environment, UNOPS, the Krim Group, and Lonely Whale, saw the President of the General Assembly partner with the UN Secretary General’s Office, as well as facilities management, to remove all single use plastics from the UNHQ in New York. This follows on other successful efforts by UN offices in Geneva, Nairobi and Vienna, amongst others.

The ‘Play it Out’ festival was held in Antigua and Barbuda on 1 June 2019 and was part of a global rallying cry to address plastic pollution, particularly in marine ecosystems.

Headlined by ‘socca-king’ Machel Montano and Grammy Award winning singer/songwriter Ashanti, the festival included acts such as St. Lucia, Bomba Estéreo, Nico & Vinz, Rocky Dawuni, Cody Simpson, and Robin Schulz, amongst others. The event also featured top local artists, Ricardo Drue and Claudette Peters. Key speakers at the event included actress Meagan Good, actor and activist Adrian Grenier, and advocate and influencer Amanda Cerny.

“At the heart of my Presidency is a firm belief that multilateral solutions, involving a diverse group of stakeholders, is the only sustainable and efficient way to deliver results,” noted President Espinosa. “The challenge of plastics is one that spans the entire globe…every region, every ocean, every environment is impacted. Play it Out purposefully brought together Member States, the UN, the private sector, philanthropic groups and individuals, and musicians and artists to combine our efforts towards a global solution.”

President Espinosa added: “This video, which captures the amazing and moving performances of our talented artists, as well as impassioned speeches from our partners, really captures the spirit of that evening: we CAN do this, we CAN beat plastic pollution. I am so thankful to everyone who helped make this possible and I hope that this message and legacy continues.”

The summary video for #PlayitOut can be found here:

Further details can be found on the Campaign website:

The video, a culmination of the campaign, is being supported by Digital Agency Fuel Online, one of the oldest and most respected digital marketing agencies in the United States.



The ‘Play it Out’ concert and the leadership of the Government of Antigua and Barbuda, resulted in the St. John’s Declaration on Plastic Pollution, which will see plastics addressed by Caribbean countries. Likewise, through partnering with the Office of the Secretary General and UN facilities management, as well as food vendor Culinart, the UN headquarters in New York is now entirely free of single-use plastics.


For media inquiries and interview requests, please contact:

Carl Mercer, Campaign Adviser to the President of the General Assembly,  

Mobile: 3476525933