Plastic waste can cause economic losses of up to USD 1.2 billion

Based on data released in an article by the Ministry of Marine Affairs and Fisheries, plastic waste in the sector of fisheries, shipping, tourism and insurance businesses globally can cause economic losses up to USD 1.2 billion. The waste problem doesn’t just talk about the environment, but also patterns of economic development that require innovation, such as the application of a circular economy. 

Everidia Education with the Greeneration Foundation discussed it in the “Waste Management in the Tourism Area” webinar on Tuesday (23/03/2021). Community Empowerment Specialist from Greeneration Foundation (GF) Jibriel Firman Sofyan was present as the speaker. This webinar was moderated by Melia Femiola S.T.P., M.T., Ph. D. as a coordinator of the Principles of Responsible Management Education (PRME) of SBM ITB.

GF has constructed several waste management attempts, one of which is at Pulau Merah Beach, Banyuwangi, East Java. Waste generation data from the EcoRanger program by GF shows that waste generation due to the activities of industries and tourists on Pulau Merah reaches 3,778 kg/month. Meanwhile, the waste from the consignment reaches 743 kg/month. 

Responding to the importance of tourism waste management, the EcoRanger program under the auspices of the GF exists to create cadres in some locations (community empowerment-based). The community strives to provide solutions and contribute to waste management in Indonesian tourism destinations. In struggling for the environment, it needs to be echoed that the economy must have broad benefits. Therefore, the EcoRanger teams are trained to share experiences, upgrading knowledge, empowering people, guiding existing resources, empowering entrepreneurial principles, and developing organizational ability. From the network of EcoRanger cadres in various regions, they can discuss with each other how to find solutions to existing problems. 

The five main activities of this team for establishing tourism waste management include beach clean-up activities carried out regularly and in several places.

Then, education for tourists to create awareness of the responsibility and importance of managing waste. “We also empower the community to initiate steps to manage waste in order to protect the environment,” Jibriel said.

Additionally, we organize activities such as tours and training and we create continuous innovation. There are also five aspects of the EcoRanger program in assisting community groups in creating a sustainable waste management system, such as institutional, operations, regulations, community, and funding.

For the closing statement, Jibriel Firman added that dealing with environmental issues needs to be done together. He invited us to encourage this activity from every sector to create solutions to these problems.

Written by Student Reporter (Apriyandi, EMBA 2022)