Call for travel firms to cut waste

HAI PHONG, Vietnam, 30 JULY 2019: Tourism companies need to do more to campaign against plastic waste in the ocean, a workshop reported at the weekend.

Jointly hosted by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Association (VUSTA), and the People’s Committee of Cat Hai district, the workshop focused on campaigns that would reduce single-use plastics and build awareness about plastic waste in the oceans.

According to a Vietnam News Agency report, experts estimated 400 million tonnes of plastics produced annually, 8 million tonnes end up in the ocean.

In Vietnam, the country discharges 2.5 million tonnes of plastic litter into the environment, and experts said the tourism sector dumped a massive amount of plastic waste.

Vice-Chairman of the People’s Committee in Cat Hai district Hoang Trung Cuong said an action plan had been formulated to reduce plastic garbage volume and to cut 50% of plastic waste in the district by 2020.”

He said state agencies must limit single-use plastics, and at least 70% of the tourism service providers have now pledged to use environmentally friendly products.

Restaurants, hotels and tourist boats have been ordered to reduce hard-to-decompose plastic bags and join the anti-plastic waste campaign.

Hoteliers attending the workshop said campaigns had been launched to replace single-use products with natural alternatives such as bamboo straws and cups in the past two years.

But travel consumers still prefer plastic products due to their convenience and to be successful equally convenient non-plastic alternatives needed to be introduced.

(Source Vietnam News Agency)