© © Shutterstock / John Dvorak / WWF
Taking the moment of National Waste Awareness Day (HPSN) which is commemorated every February 21, WWF-Indonesia through the Plastic Smart Cities (PSC) program initiated an activity entitled "National Waste Awareness Day Festival 2023". Held at KALA in Kalijaga, South Jakarta, on Saturday, February 25, the 2023 National Waste Awareness Festival aims to optimize existing elements in the development and the improvement of public awareness, by building an action plan to reduce the consumption and production of plastic waste in three locations, namely Jakarta, Bogor, and Depok.
The HPSN 2023 Festival opened with a workshop on making upcycling products from plastic bag waste with Recycling Village. This activity was attended by around 50 participants, some of whom were members of Plastic Smart Cities partners in Jakarta, Depok and Bogor, as well as the general public. Sabrina Allisha, co-founder from Recyling Village, shares the knowledge on how to turn plastic bags, which often end up as waste, into beautiful fashion products that have economic value such as wallets and bags.
After the workshop, the event continued with an interactive discussion with the theme "Women and Actions to Reduce Plastic Waste". The discussion on the role of women in reducing plastic waste presented NPAP Ambassador for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) speaker Yenny Wahid, Expert Staff of the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment Okto Irianto, Environmental Education Consultant Dila Hadju, and the Chair of the Pulo Kambing Foundation, East Jakarta Vera Nofita.
Irfan Bakhtiar, Director of Climate & Market Transformation of WWF-Indonesia in his speech said "People often think that a lot of waste comes from coastal areas. In fact, the waste comes from the river and then is carried downstream, namely to the sea. Through the Plastic Smart Cities program in Jakarta, Bogor and Depok, we hope to build a new commitment through sustainable practices."
Data from the Ocean Conservancy in 2017, estimated that 75% of plastic waste once produced ends up being waste, and 80% of plastic marine debris comes from land-based sources, with most coming from urban areas of polluted waterways bringing plastic pollution into the ocean. (source: Ocean Conservacy, 2015)
Meanwhile, Okto Irianto, Expert Staff of the Minister from the Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment also said that "Indonesia is the second highest contributor of marine debris in the world, especially from plastic waste. Big companies are behind this development, because they produce an excessive amount of plastic," Okto said. "The government aims to reduce the amount of single-use plastic produced, and increase the production of more environmentally friendly plastics." He added that the implementation of a circular economy is one solution to overcome this problem.
The Strong Role of Women
On the same occasion, Yenny Wahid, who is the NPAP Ambassador for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI), said that in plastic waste management, women have a very important role. How women use their persuasion to contribute positively to society. The key is giving access to women to be facilitated and be more empowered.
According to her, women have a variety of creativity and a high mobility when facilitated. Women should not be required to do their own efforts without the support of parties that strengthen them. "Actually, women themselves are sufficient. The girls have the desire and instinct to take care of others. Because from the data, it is concluded that when we facilitate one woman, the effect is to the wider community. It's like the ripple effect that continues by itself," Yenny said.
Plastic Smart Cities Indonesia Website Launched
The HPSN Festival 2023 is also an event for Plastic Smart Cities Indonesia to launch the official website of www.plasticsmartcities.id, a website that is an important platform that will facilitate the initiatives of Plastic Smart Cities collaborators or partners in the cities of Jakarta, Bogor and Depok. On this website, information on activities, activities, achievements and work with partners will be displayed in various efforts to prevent and stop the leakage of plastic waste into nature. Through this website, it is also hoped that important information can be disseminated, both to relevant stakeholders, as well as to the general public.
The rapid development of urban areas, as well as their ever-increasing populations, is expected to contribute for two-thirds of the global population by 2050. For this reason, a smart solution is needed to reduce the collective impact on the environment caused by the activities and behaviors of the people living in the city.
Since 2018, Plastic Smart Cities, an initiative of WWF International, has supported cities and coastal centers in taking bold action to stop plastic pollution, with the aim of reducing the leakage of plastic waste into nature by 30% in the near future, and realizing the condition of no plastic in nature by 2030.
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