In support of Indonesia’s National Waste Awareness Day (Hari Peduli Sampah Nasional or HPSN in short), WWF-Indonesia organised a weekend event to help raise awareness through the Plastic Smart Cities programme.
On Saturday, February 25, this event brought together over 50 participants from Jakarta, Depok and Bogor, including PSC partners from the academia, business and government sectors, as well as community leaders from areas where pilot solutions are being implemented.
Increasing Public Awareness on Reducing Plastic Pollution
Together with Recycling Village, the event opened with a creative upcycling workshop. Sabrina Allisha, the co-founder of Recycling Village, shared her knowledge on how to transform used plastic bags — which are often used only once and end up as plastic pollution or at best in landfills — into beautiful fashion items that have economic value such as wallets and bags.
“People often think that a lot of waste comes from coastal areas. In fact, mismanaged waste starts from the river before being carried downstream to the sea. Through the Plastic Smart Cities programme in Jakarta, Bogor, and Depok, we hope to build a new commitment through sustainable practices,” said Irfan Bakhtiar, Director of Climate & Market Transformation of WWF-Indonesia.
“Indonesia is the second highest contributor to marine waste, particularly from plastic waste, in the world. Major corporations are behind this development, as they produce an excessive amount of plastic,” said Okto Irianto, Expert Staff for Maritime Law at the Coordinating Minister for Maritime Affairs and Investment. “[The government] aims to reduce the number of single-use plastics produced, and increase the production of recyclable, environmentally friendly plastics.”
In a panel discussion titled “Women and Actions to Reduce Plastic Waste”, Okto added that the success of programmes like Plastic Smart Cities depended on the public, not least public figures, clerics and women. “Women play an important role in recycling drives by exercising their authority in the home and community, among others by instilling environmental awareness in their husbands and families. They are well-placed to do this because of their knowledge of consumer goods,” he said.
Jumping on this discussion, Yenny Wahid, the Ambassador for Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) of Indonesia’s National Plastic Action Partnership (NPAP), concurred, sharing that “…it’s important how women use their persuasion to contribute positively to society. The key is giving access to women… to be more empowered.”
“When we facilitate one woman (to take action), the effect is on the wider community. It’s like the ripple effect that continues by itself,” Yenny added.
(Also read about how women in Donsol, Philippines, are fighting plastic pollution here)
Plastic Smart Cities Indonesia Website Launched
Alongside the festive activities, a national website for Plastic Smart Cities in Indonesia was launched on the same day. This website will share information on activities, achievements, and the work with partners in Indonesia to prevent and stop plastic waste leakage into nature. It aims to become a source of information and knowledge that can support anyone working to stop plastic leakage into nature, starting with sharing lessons learnt from the pilot cities of Jakarta, Bogor, and Depok.
- A video recording of the event is available on YouTube at
Plastic Smart Cities is a key initiative of WWF’s global ‘No Plastic in Nature’ agenda. Since 2018, the initiative supports cities and coastal centres that are taking bold action to stop plastic pollution. By working alongside pilot cities, entrepreneurs, innovators and community leaders, Plastic Smart Cities aims to achieve a 30% reduction in the cities’ plastic leakage by 2025, through better waste management and advancing the circular economy.