WWF is calling on cities in South East Asia to join Patong (Thailand), Donsol (Philippines) and Phu Quoc (Vietnam) in making a commitment to eliminate plastic pollution, by developing an action plan and trial innovative solutions. Plastic Smart Cities is a WWF initiative bringing together cities and tourism destinations to commit to fight plastic pollution. In just the last 12 months WWF has fundraised $40M USD to work on circular economy projects in cities in Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia and Philippines.
An estimated 60% of plastic marine debris derives from urban centers, often carried to the ocean by rivers. While cities will rapidly increase their populace to account for two-thirds of the global population by 2050, they must urgently adopt smart solutions that reduce the collective impact of their prospering communities. This means preventing, minimizing and managing plastic. Many good examples and initiatives are already underway; WWF seeks to accelerate these existing efforts by empowering cities around the world to become Plastic Smart.
At today’s Responsible Business Forum Singapore 2019, Chairman of the People’s committee of Phu Quoc District, Vietnam - Mr. Mai Van Huynh, Advisor to Mayor of Patong Municipality, Thailand - Mr. Kumnung Sing-Eaim, and Mayor of Donsol, Philippines - Hon. Josephine Alcantara joins have signed Declaration of Intent into WWF’s Plastic Smart Cities program on behalf of their cities.
Through Plastic Smart Cities, WWF is building cities’ capacity to eliminate plastic pollution by 2030. An online knowledge platform with best practices will be launched at the World Urban Forum in February 2020. In the meantime, WWF is calling on Asian cities to sign-up and to start sharing best practices through www.plasticsmartcities.org. Today is the beginning of a long-term campaign to reduce plastic globally through sharing innovative, tried and tested solutions for those on the front line in the fight against plastic pollution. Mayors also call on governments to introduce a global legally-binding agreement to stop plastics polluting our oceans.
Vincent Kneefel, Global Cities Lead, WWF:
“With eight million metric tons of plastic entering our oceans each year, mismanaged plastic waste is profoundly threatening people and the environment, especially rivers and oceans. We are proud to launch Plastic Smart Cities today and are confident that through this initiative we can create a global movement of cities taking action to tackle plastic pollution and stop leakage into nature. Plastic Smart Cities will strengthen action when it comes to preventing, measuring, and managing plastic waste at a local level. Our goal is to promote best practices around the world and to make sure that smart measures on plastic reduction and waste management are widely shared. With strong commitments from cities, governments and industry, we can end additional plastics in nature and ensure the safety of our communities and the environment.”
Key stats on plastic pollution:
The amount of plastic entering the ocean is projected to grow four-fold by 2050. Transformative changes, including moving away from single-use towards re-useable packaging, are needed to save our oceans, say Vincent Kneefel and John Duncan.