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Vietnam acts to combat white pollution

Update: 22-04-2024 | 16:02:13

The Vietnamese Government has issued a lot of policies, participated in various forums, and promoted international cooperation, demonstrating its activeness and affirming its determination to reduce plastic waste and join global efforts toward a planet without white pollution.

According to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Vietnam's per capita plastic use has increased rapidly, from 3.8kg a year in 1990 to 41kg in 2015 and about 54kg currently. The increasing consumption will lead to rises in plastic waste, the risk of white pollution, as well as the pressure on the environmental management system, unless effective and scientific management is conducted.

On December 4, 2019, the Prime Minister issued a decision announcing the National Action Plan on Ocean Plastic Waste Management by 2030.

It aims to reduce 75% of plastic waste in seas and oceans; collect 100% of lost or abandoned fishing gears and put an end to the disposal of fishing tools directly into the sea; ensure 100% of tourist areas, attractions, accommodation establishments and other coastal tourism services suppliers do not use single-use plastic products and non-biodegradable plastic bags; and 100% of marine protected areas are free of plastic waste.

Following the plan, the ministry officially approved a project on reducing ocean plastic waste in Vietnam. The project, funded by the German Ministry of Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety through the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), has been implemented in 10 areas of Da Nang city and eight provinces.

At the World Economic Forum (WEF) Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, in 2019, the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment and a WEF representative signed a Letter of Intent related to plastic waste treatment and the building of a circular economy, aiming to help Vietnam participate in the Global Plastic Action Partnership (GPAP). To implement the GPAP, a project on strengthening plastic waste management in Vietnam was approved by the Prime Minister in 2021. On November 19, 2021, the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment issued a decision on the establishment of a working group to implement the National Plastic Action Partnership (NPAP) programme in Vietnam.

On March 7, 2024, Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Le Cong Thanh signed a decision publising a plan to implement NPAP activities and participate in international forums on plastic waste in 2024.

The plan aims to support and enhance the operation effectiveness of technical groups established within the framework of the NPAP based on main pillars of innovation, finance, policy, gender equality and inclusive development, and communications and awareness improvement.

In addition, the Institute of Strategy and Policy on Natural Resources and Environment under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment is coordinating with the United Nations Environment Programme to build steps to implement a project on enhancing the capacity of plastic pollution management in Vietnam.

It includes two component projects on strengthening plastic pollution control through promoting monitoring activities in Vietnam to provide information for the management and policy making process, and on intensifying plastic waste value chain management in target provinces with river basins through promoting circular economic models and innovative solutions to prevent plastic waste at source./.

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