Communities help government to curb ocean waste in Indonesia

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Thousands of Indonesian communities across the nation have been helping the government to curb ocean waste in Indonesia to 70 percent by 2025, an official stated.

Deputy leader of Science and Technology Desk at the Coordinating Ministry of Maritime, Safri Burhanudin, stated here on Saturday that nearly 10 thousand communities, with 100 to 200 members in each community, are continuing to clean plastic wastes from local beaches and coastal areas.

“One of the areas which have been regularly removing plastic waste from beaches is Bali,” he noted.

Bali is the most popular tourism destination in Indonesia that is famous for its beautiful beaches, but it has been affected by plastic waste and other products that have been polluting the coastal areas for years.

Indonesia has committed to reduce the amount of plastic and other waste products that pollute its water to 70 percent by 2025, as an effort to support the United Nation’s new Clean Seas Campaign.

Earlier, during the 2017 World Ocean Summit in Bali, the Coordinating Minister of Maritime Affairs, Luhut Panjaitan, announced that Indonesia had pledged up to US1 billion a year to reduce the ocean waste.

Panjaitan also proposed some measures to achieve the 70 percent reduction target by using biodegradable materials to produce environmentally friendly plastic, regulating a nationwide tax on plastic bags, as well as developing a sustained public education campaign.

The commitment was also stressed by President Joko Widodo during the G20 Summit last year in Hamburg, Germany, highlighting that Indonesia would be free from plastic waste by 2025.

In order to achieve the target, Burhanudin revealed that the ministry has been carrying out measures, such as clean beaches campaign involving communities and research, to recycle the waste.

According to the ministry`s data, Indonesia produces 5.6 million tons of plastic ocean waste in Indonesia per year, comprising 3.3 million tons that can be reused as fertilizers and 1.6 million tons are recyclable wastes.

Burhanudin lauded some research conducted by University of Udayana, Bali, to recycle plastic waste as a material for asphalt.

The ministry also supports the construction of waste-to-energy power plant in Bali in 2018.

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