BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN, April 19 (Xinhua) -- Brunei need to resort to a Whole of Nation approach in dealing with the increasingly serious plastic pollution problem, Haji Suhaimi, the country's Minister of Development said on Thursday.
When officiating a launching ceremony to mark the addition of Thursday towards No Plastic Bag Everyday in conjunction with Earth Day 2018, which falls on April 22 carrying the theme "End Plastic Pollution", the minister emphasised the importance of an integrated effort towards combating plastic pollution.
"Success in realizing the desire to make Brunei Darussalam free from plastic pollution is entirely dependent on the actions of all parties, especially the supermarkets and business establishments, retail shop owners and people who are plastic bags users," the minister stated.
"If there is no consciousness among us all about the pollution from plastic bags, all the plans that the government has planned will not be a complete success," he added.
After the ceremony, a delegation from the Ministry of Development visited several supermarkets in the capital to hand out 3000 reusable bags to shoppers.
After the addition of Thursday, the remaining days will be added in phases with Wednesday tentatively to be included in July 2018, Tuesday in October 2018 and Monday to be added in December 2018 towards realizing the government's objective of No Plastic Bag Everyday by 2019.
The initiative will initially involve stores and businesses that are currently listed under the No Plastic Bag Weekend initiative but will be extended to other consumers of plastic bags such as retails shops, restaurants and stalls.
The No Plastic Bag Weekend initiative was initially launched in March 2011 to include Saturday and Sunday, with Friday being added in February 2012.