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PRESS RELEASE May 21, 2021

New Data-driven Approach Maps Plastic Pollution from Source to Sea in Indonesia, Offers Improvement Strategies

JAKARTA, May 20, 2021 –

The study, Plastic Waste Discharges from Rivers and Coastlines in Indonesia, launched today in Jakarta, synthesizes waste records from more than 500 municipal and provincial areas across the archipelago – including annual rainfall, topography, and river flow data - and models the movement of plastic waste from land-based sources into the marine environment.

,” explains Ann Jeannette Glauber, Practice Manager for Environment, Natural Resources and the Blue Economy at the World Bank. “This cutting-edge study draws on local and country-level data to help inform the kinds of bold waste management and prevention policies that are needed to support targets put forth in Indonesia’s National Plan of Action for Combating Marine Debris.”

Findings from the study reinforce the need to strengthen waste management efforts across the country. These endeavors are critical, given that Indonesia generates approximately 7.8 million tons of plastic waste each year. Despite efforts by the government and communities in the country, 40 percent of urban residents still do not have access to basic waste collection services and an estimated 85 percent of plastic waste generated in rural areas is not formally collected. Furthermore, 4.9 million tons of plastic waste is not properly managed every year - creating challenges from waste disposed in open dumpsites and poorly managed landfills. The study also found 83 percent of the annual plastic debris currently leaking into the marine environment from land-based sources is carried and discharged via rivers.

“The increase in the amount of plastic waste generated in Indonesia is following the growth of the population and economy of the country. But as a nation, we are taking action and have committed to cutting marine plastic leakage by 70 percent within the next five years,” said Nani Hendiarti, Deputy of Environment and Forestry Management for Indonesia’s Coordinating Ministry for Maritime Affairs and Investment. “We have a lot of work ahead of us. But with insights from this and other studies, and with the strategies put forth in the National Plan of Action, we believe a plastic pollution-free Indonesia is not only possible, but achievable.”

To support the government’s strategy and actions, the report provides several recommendations, including measures to strengthening solid waste management practices and generate knowledge, as well as incentives in key rural and urban areas. The report also encourages the government to improve waste collection coverage, optimize the use of existing structures in waterways and drainage to prevent plastic waste from reaching the sea, promote a circular economy to reduce plastics consumption, and systematically monitor and improve waste data.

To Download Report: Plastic Waste Discharges from Rivers and Coastlines in Indonesia and Appendices.


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