A quiet revolution is underway in Maldives, a low-lying archipelago of more than 1200 coral islands surrounded by some of the bluest water in the Indian Ocean. The nation’s small but determined population of just over a half-million refuses to allow plastic trash to continue poisoning the ocean and strangling marine life.
Residents on the island ofSupported by the World Bank, this work benefits the environment and boosts the local economy.
Maldives schoolchildren attend special classes to learn about marine plastic pollution
According to some estimates, by 2050 the world’s oceans will contain more plastic than fish
Today, on World Oceans Day, the World Bank, Parley for the Oceans, and the South Asia Cooperative Environment Programme, an inter-governmental institution, are launching an ambitious $50 million regional project based on the Maldives example.
Urgent action is needed. If global plastic production continues at its current rate of about 300 million tons annually, according to some estimates, by 2050 the world’s oceans will contain more plastic than fish.
COVID-19 poses difficult choices between health and the environment, with increased use of single-use plastics and increased production of medical waste further threatening the Earth’s oceans
The pandemic also poses difficult choices between health and the environment, with increased use of single-use plastics and increased production of medical waste further threatening the Earth’s oceans.
The Plastic-free Rivers and Seas for South Asia project will offer grants to fund innovative
There is no single solution for an environmental problem as complex as plastic pollution. Collaboration is the way forward.
Importantly, the entire South Asia region, all eight countries, is participating in this project to move towards more plastic free rivers and seas.
The region’s eight nations – Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka – do not often stand together in solidarity because of historical differences. In this case, however, all have banned single-use plastic bags and are eager to work together on new approaches to address plastic pollution that crosses national borders. We applaud their commitment to environmental protection.
The South Asia Cooperative Environment Program, or SACEP, will lead the project.
We also need your help.
Please start or join a local group to clean up plastic litter fouling a river or watershed.
Do it today.