The launching ceremony saw the attendance of Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha, United Nations Development Program Country Director for Vietnam Caitlin Wiensen, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Vietnam Kamal Malhotra and many foreign ambassadors in Vietnam.
The overview of the launching ceremony. Photo: Anh Kiet
Addressing the ceremony, Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Tran Hong Ha said that the “Anti-plastic waste” campaign will be carried out on a nationwide scale, with the participation of the whole society to propagate and advocate the community to prevent plastic waste released to the environment.
Hanoi emits from 4,000 to 5,000 tons of waste each day, of which plastic waste accounts for 7-8%. Notably, the amount of plastic bags increases each year. This is a “burden” for the environment, and even leads to a catastrophe that environmentalists call it “white pollution”, Minister Ha noted.
Pollution of plastic waste, especially in oceans, has become a global imperative issue. Minimizing waste from plastic and nylon has become an urgent need, starting with minimizing the consumption of biodegradable plastic and nylon products, especially disposable plastic products, he added.
Making speech at the event, Envoy Okabe Daisuke from Japanese Embassy in Vietnam said: “Regarding the plastic waste management, public awareness is the most important. We believe that this campaign lays a foundation to raise public attention to the importance of plastic waste reduction in Vietnam. When it comes to the household waste management, I have seen the precedent cases which illustrate that public enlightenment and implementation are the two sides of the same coin.”
Chargé d’affaires Robert Bisett from the Canadian Embassy in Vietnam emphasized that plastic pollution is a pressing global issue with devastating ecological consequences, adding that 300 million tons of plastic are produced annually and one million plastic bags are used every minute around the world.
He also stressed that Vietnam is among the top five source countries of plastic waste dumped into the world’s oceans each year and Canada is proud to have supported the Vietnamese government’s efforts in tackling environmental pollution and climate change since the mid 1990s.
In her speech, UNDP Country Director Caitlin Wiensen said: “We recognize that concerted efforts by multiple stakeholders are essential to effectively addressing plastic pollution. It’s encouraging to note, the presence, here today, of representatives of not only government agencies, but also those of industry and civil society, including youth and women groups. This is very much in line with the ‘extended producer responsibility’ approach, outlined in the Ocean Plastics Charter.”
She commented that Vietnamese people can be confident that with MONRE leadership and strong commitment, specific and concrete measures will be adopted to help achieve the ambitious targets on solid waste and nylon bags.
She encouraged the Vietnamese government to follow through and implement the national strategy on solid waste management by 2025, adding that she wishes Vietnam will reduce plastic pollution.
The United Nations launched “For a cleaner world” campaign, that was started in Australia in 1993, on a global scale. The campaign is an opportunity to bring together businesses, community groups, schools, individuals and countries across the globe to participate in environmental improvement and protection.
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