Plastic pollution alert

Some 16% of all waste in the Sultanate is made up of plastic materials and the problem is a serious concern in the country, said the director of the Department of Environment, Parks and Recreation (JASTRe) of the Ministry of Development, Martinah Binti Haji Tamit.

She pointed out that while the use of plastic can provide certain benefits and conveniences to the community and consumers, what remains problematic is the mismanagement of single-use plastics and inefficient waste disposal.

To combat this problem, the government has launched many initiatives, including the “Plastic Bag Free Weekend Initiative”, “Plastic Bag Free Everyday Initiative” and “Plastic Bottle Free Initiative”. , among others.

She made the comments during Bank Islam Brunei Darussalam’s Eco Chat series on Saturday, emphasizing the need for the nation to come together to tackle plastic pollution.
in Brunei.

The forum (BIBD), as part of the campaign for a sustainable nation’s SME 360 series, continued to highlight the damaging effects of single-use plastics on the ecosystem and how a circular economy can play its part in the protection of our environment in the Sultanate.

Speakers at the chat series. PHOTO: BIBD

The World Economic Forum says a holistic circular economic model is key to reducing environmental degradation and prioritizing biodiversity and nature, while ensuring future competitiveness.

Martinah said plastic pollution is a long and uphill battle in Brunei, although there are initiatives and policies being implemented by the government, there is still room for improvement in Brunei to achieve a plastic pollution system. sustainable and effective waste management in the country.

She also called for the support and participation of individuals and organizations to ensure the achievement of the agenda.

Other speakers included Kaimana Living co-founder Tiffany Lai, Reef Check Brunei researcher and first secretary Emily Yong and Kilang ReRoot co-founder Syamilah Osman.

Syamilah said that while Bruneians are aware of the ongoing fight against plastic pollution, there is a need to step up efforts. She also shared that the current COVID-19 pandemic is making the agenda more difficult as more and more people tend to order food delivery and takeout, leading to an increase in plastics at Disposable.

Meanwhile, Tiffany suggested more policing from authorities and awareness campaigns.

This was echoed by Emily who raised concerns on the issue of plastic materials such as fishing nets and ghost nets trapped in coral reefs destroying the ecosystem and
Marine life.

The speakers encouraged the audience to engage and contribute to the program to tackle plastic pollution in Brunei as well as lead by example to achieve the goal of creating a green and sustainable environment in Brunei.

The Eco Chat series, organized in partnership with Community for Brunei and ASEAN Youth Advocates Network (AYAN) Brunei, is intended to be a catalyst for change and education by starting a conversation and educating the public with experts and stakeholders Of the industry.

Among the topics that will be covered in the Climate Crisis Series are the Sustainable Development Goals, plastic pollution and fast fashion.

The series, open to the public and streamed live to the community, will feature speakers from BIBD, Brunei Climate Change Secretariat, Green Brunei, Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sports, Brunei Shell Petroleum Company Sdn Bhd, of Brunei LNG Sdn Bhd,
among others.

The Eco Chat series is set to continue with a discussion on sustainable food consumption and production on March 5.

The public can follow BIBD and Community for Brunei on their social media channel to find out how to register and dates for future rounds.

As one of the pillars of BIBD’s Sustainability Framework – Responsible Entrepreneurship, BIBD SME360 hopes to provide a platform for businesses to learn and understand their business model and how they can participate in building a business that helps to create a sustainable nation and to support the government of His Majesty Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu’izzaddin Waddaulah ibni Al-Marhum Sultan Haji Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Sa’adul Khairi Waddien, Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalamam aim to reach net zero by 2050.

Bryce K. Locke