Cook Islands NGO battle to stop using plastic

Picture: SUPPLIED

RAROTONGA, 13 SEPTEMBER 2018 (RADIO COOK ISLANDS) – Environmental NGO, Te Ipukarea Society has started a fight. Not just any fight but a battle to stop the use of single use plastic – which is the most common litter polluting the nation.

Different civil society bodies which champion environment have been raising awareness on the harmful effects of plastic especially single use plastic. Te Ipukarea Society have now started the Plastic Battle.

According to TIS officer, Alanna Smith the campaign requires retailers and consumers to say no to single use plastic by preventing the sales of single use plastic bottles to the customers.

The Plastic Battle campaign idea is that establishments that are on board and are not selling plastic bottles get one of these stickers and posters to highlight that the business or establishment is supporting the no use of single use plastic from sales.

Smith says the bigger step is to have a legislation in place which will ban the importation of single use plastics.

“The Waste Management Committee which includes the Ipukarea Society, Government, Watsan, Private Sector and people from the Community have come together to work on trying to ban polystyrene containers. That is one initiative we are looking to do. Tourism CIs is also looking in the area of banning plastic bags from being sold here in the Cook Islands.”

The Te Ipukarea Society is also campaigning at regional and international level to bring about changes in law which will see fishing vessels and other ships dumping their plastic waste into the ocean. This is the reason why Suwarrow’s beaches are littered with plastic..

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