Story | 05 Oct, 2021

Businesses take action to reduce plastic waste towards Hoi An – A green destination

Hoi An in Quang Nam Province is a world-famous tourist destination. But because of covid, the town has received far fewer visitors. The total number of tourists visiting Viet Nam fell by 99%, from 2 million in early 2020 to 15,000 in October 2021 [1].

As a cultural World Heritage Site, Hoi An is aware of the need to reduce solid and plastic waste. In December 2019, Hoi An City Council enacted Directive 15-CT/TU [2] on strengthening the monitoring and reduction of single-use plastics and non-biodegradable plastic bags. In April 2021, the City People’s Committee issued Plan 801/KH-UBND to decrease use of plastic bags and single-use plastics and increase the effectiveness of waste reduction and waste segregation at source.

To support Directive 15 and Plan 801, Hoi An and the Quang Nam Tourism Association are implementing the Planning Framework for Businesses on Plastic Waste Reduction, towards Hoi An, a Green Destination (2021-2023). The aim of the framework is to get businesses involved in plastic waste reduction and recycling. The framework will apply the “8T” principles; reject; reduce; recycle/refill; replace; waste separation; communications, circular network and sustainable services and products.

In December 2020, Hoi An Department of Natural Resources and Environment and the Quang Nam Tourism Association, in collaboration with IUCN and other partners, held a workshop on the Framework with 85 representatives from 50 businesses, local government, donors, media and non-profit organizations.

36 businesses have committed to the framework. Of these, 44% are in the restaurant sector, 22% in the hotel/resort sector, 14% in homestays, and 8% in cafes and grocery shops. At the workshop, businesses supported the ideas but pointed out difficulties implementing waste separation at source, processing organic waste, alternatives to plastic, and benchmarks and rewards.

Given the fact that organic waste represents two-thirds of total waste, as shown in IUCN published plastic waste audit report 2020 in Hoi An, IUCN is working with Green Youth Collective Social Enterprise to support Material Recovery Facilities (MRF) to encourage household and businesses to separate organic waste.

IUCN will continue collaborating with Hoi An, Quang Nam Tourism Association, and other partners to officially launch the framework and support its implementation to promote local initiatives and MRFs to reduce plastic waste, develop recycling systems and promote the circular economy in the city.

These activities are parts of IUCN Viet Nam – PRO Vietnam Strategic Partnership with the financial support of PRO Viet Nam.