Vietnam takes actions towards plastic bag free community
  • | VNA | July 04, 2024 03:06 PM
Together with other countries in the world, Vietnam has been taking actions to reduce plastic waste and the use of single-use plastic bags, towards a plastic bag free community.

Customers are given reusable bags when shopping at BigC Thăng Long Supermarket on International Plastic Bag Free Day. 

According to the Worldwatch Institute, it is estimated that since 2002, each year the world has seen about 5,000 billion nylon bags produced and a large proportion of this amount used and then discarded into the environment.

The international community and national governments have increasingly recognised the unpredictable harmful effects of plastic waste on the living environment and creatures, especially the direct and severe impact on human health.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) said that each year, Vietnam discharged about 1.8 million tonnes of plastic waste, including more than 30 billion nylon bags. On average, each Vietnamese household uses about 1 kg of nylon bags per month, more than 80% of which are thrown away after being used once.

Statistics from the Vietnam Plastics Association showed that the amount of plastic waste and nylon bags in Vietnam accounts for 8%-12% of the total domestic solid waste, but only about 11%-12% is processed and recycled, the remainder is mainly buried, burned and discharged to the environment. In urban areas, the amount of nylon bags consumed is about 10.48 - 52.4 tonnes per day, of which only about 17% are regularly reused.

The habit of using plastic bags can leave long-term consequences for the environment, as it takes 500-1,000 years for a nylon bag to completely decompose.

Together with many countries around the world, Vietnam has committed to taking drastic actions to reduce plastic wastes and nylon bags.

The 2020 Law on Environmental Protection clearly stipulates the recycling and waste treatment responsibilities of manufacturers and regulations on minimising, reusing, recycling, treating plastic waste, and preventing and combating ocean plastic waste pollution.

In Decision No. 1316/QD-TTg issued on July 22, 2021, the Prime Minister approved a project to strengthen the management of plastic waste in Vietnam, which is expected to realise the national strategy on integrated solid waste management to 2025 with a vision to 2050, contributing to building a circular economy with the orientation of reducing the use of single-use plastic products and non-degradable nylon bags, increasing reuse, recycling and treatment of plastic waste.

The project targets include the use of 100% nylon bags and packaging environmentally friendly at shopping centres and supermarkets by 2025, and the reduction of 50% of ocean plastic waste.

For the second year, Vietnam has actively responded to the International Plastic Bag Free Day (July 3), aiming to encourage consumers to reduce the use of nylon bags and promote environmentally friendly solutions worldwide.

A campaign jointly held by the MoNRE’s Institute of Strategy and Policy on Natural Resources and Environment and the Vietnam Alliance of Retailers on reducing single-use nylon bags since June 29 has drawn a large number of shops, supermarkets and trade centres such as TH true mart, Central Retail Vietnam, AEON Vietnam and LOTTE Mart Vietnam.

The LOTTE Eco Green campaign by LOTTE Mart has been implemented effectively. This year, on July 3, LOTTE Mart has responded to the International Plastic Bag Free Day in all 16 supermarkets in its chain.

Meanwhile, Central Retail Vietnam has responded to the day by encouraging consumers to reusable environmentally friendly bags for shopping, selling non-profit Lohas bags, and supporting customers in packaging of goods in carton bags for free.

Vietnamese dairy firm TH has applied modern technologies to reduce the amount of plastic on its packaging and labelling system, while launching many programmes to encourage consumers to use canvas bags.

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