HCM City (VNA) - Innovative ways to reduce plastic pollution took center stage at the Plastic Innovation Hub Vietnam (Hub Vietnam) Demo Day 2023 held in Ho Chi Minh City on October 27.
The innovations were the outcome of the eight-week training programme from the Indo-Pacific Plastics Innovation Network (IPPIN).
Australian Consul General in HCM City Sarah Hooper said that IPPIN is an important programme in the region, which helps promote innovation to reduce plastics pollution and mitigate the impact of climate change.
Both Vietnam and Australia face formidable challenges of climate change and the environment, with critical impacts on food security and the economy’s prosperity, she said, highlighting cooperation between science agencies and the private sector as significant to bring about practical measures.
Meanwhile, Dr Kim Wimbush, senior advisor at Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) in Vietnam, said that the event created opportunities for stakeholders to enhance connectivity in the innovation ecosystem, while honouring the startup skills of local innovators.
He said that IPPIN’s programmes aim at improving capacity of the local innovation ecosystem by connecting innovators, researchers, the Government and industries to take action in the chronic and ongoing fight against plastics pollution.
Vietnam wants to introduce a ban on single-use plastic products by 2031, he added, pointing out that it is events like the Demo Day that support this initiative.
An estimated 3.1 million tonnes of plastic waste is dumped on land in Vietnam each year, and at least 10% of this ends up in the ocean.
According to the National Plastics Action Partnership Programme in Vietnam, the amount of plastic leaking into rivers and seas could double by 2030 if current waste collection, recycling and treatment processes are not implemented.
The Plastic Innovation Hub Vietnam, part of the Mekong Innovation Alliance, is committed to changing these statistics to create a cleaner, more prosperous future for all./.