Indonesia is considered the second-biggest contributor to ocean plastic after China and – according to some estimations – responsible for around 10% of global plastic pollution. Four of Indonesia’s rivers are among the 20 most polluted in the world in terms of plastic waste.
In monsoon season, thousands of metric tons of plastic debris wash ashore on the Indonesian island of Bali. The situation was so severe in December 2017 that the local government declared a “trash emergency” on the island’s most popular tourist beaches. This is in accordance with the world’s marine pollution problem: every year, approximately 8 million tons of plastic end up in the ocean. The Indonesian government is aware of this problem and announced that they will reduce marine waste by 70% by 2025! To achieve that, it has pledged to spend up to $1 billion a year on cleaning up its rivers and seas.
Now it has enlisted the help of the country’s two largest Islamic organizations, Nahdlatul Ulama (NU) and Muhammadiyah, which together have more than 100 million followers. In a new initiative, clerics from NU and Muhammadiyah will raise awareness about plastic waste and encourage their followers to switch to reusable bags.
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