Without any action, it is predicted that there will be between 0.28 and 0.73 million tonnes of plastic waste discharged into Vietnam´s see annually and subsequently causing substantially negative impacts on environment, society, and economy. Vietnam has taken actions against ocean pollution with more relevant regulations in the newly revised Law on Environment Protection 2020 (enforced in January 2021) and more specific activities led by the National Action Plan for Management of Marine Plastic Litter by 2030 (Decision 1746/QĐ-TTg, issued in December 2019).
Vietnam plans to reduce ocean plastic waste by 50% by 2025 (75% by 2030) and collect 50% (100% by 2030) of abandoned, lost, or discarded fishing gear. Additionally, the country also targets to prevent the use of single-use plastics and non-biodegradable plastic bags in 80% (100% by 2030) of coastal tourism areas, tourist attractions and accommodations, and other coastal tourism service areas. It also aims to conduct beach cleanup campaigns at least twice per year and make 80% (100% by 2030) of protected marine areas free of plastic waste.
The major approaches to achieve the above objectives are education and behavior change towards plastics and marine plastic waste. Furthermore, Vietnam also aims to improve the collection, classification, storage, and processing of plastic waste from coastal and ocean-based activities. Examples of these are beach cleanup movements and campaigns, investment in required infrastructure for collection and storage of plastic waste, development of marine plastic waste database. The country also promotes international cooperation, scientific research, and application of technologies in marine plastic waste processing to achieve those targets.
Since the issue of Decision No.1746/QĐ -TTg in 2019, Vietnam has participated in various international activities and collaborations to tackle the problems of ocean plastic waste. For example, the participation of the Vietnam Administration of Seas and Islands in the preparatory work for a stronger representation of marine experts within the framework of UN Environment Council´s expert group. More concrete plan is also conducted by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, e.g. the release of Decision No. 687/QD-BNN-TCTS on approving the first action plan in marine plastic waste management for the fishery sector from 2020 to 2030.
Source & further information: “Vietnam takes action to clean out ocean environs” at https://vietnamnet.vn, accessed on 24 June 2021.