|Plastic waste is seen along the coast of Phước Diễm in the central province of Ninh Thuận. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyễn Thành|Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Trần Hồng Hà has assigned the Việt Nam Administration of Sea and Islands to take responsibility for managing the plastic waste that is blighting the seas.
The move is part of Việt Nam’s efforts to build regional partnerships to manage plastic waste in Southeast Asia as well as a global mechanism to promote clearing the world’s seas.
The initiative was proposed at the 6th Global Environment Facility (GEF-6) Assembly in Đà Nẵng in June.
The initiative aims to promote co-operation and experience sharing among local and international organisations, and calls for changes to economic growth models with a focus on recycling instead of consumption.
According to the World Economic Forum, about 8 million tonnes of plastic waste was discharged into the oceans every year, while about 3 billion people rely on the oceans to earn a livelihood.
Environment Minister Trần Hồng Hà said that Việt Nam was committed to reducing plastic, and in the long term, working to eliminate the issue all together.
Director general of the sea and islands administration, Tạ Đình Thi, said Việt Nam was one of the world’s 20 worst polluters of plastic waste, releasing 500,000 tonnes per year.
"We are among six countries in the Southeast Asia region that has yet to build a waste management system,” he said.
He added that the country had witnessed the dangers of plastic pollution to the oceans, food chains and marine species. — VNS