Jakarta. The government has set a target to reduce plastic waste by 70 percent to preserve the environment.
Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya Bakar said Indonesia's generates up to 65 million tons of waste annually, with 14 percent, or 9 million tons, of it consisting of plastic.
"Therefore, we are pushing for cooperation between local administrations and the national government to commit to the target, and to create awareness of the impact plastic waste has on the environment," Siti said in Nusa Dua, Bali, on Thursday (23/02).
Local governments play a vital role, she added, as the community will not take heed if there are no consistent efforts set as example by governments.
"It's hard to get local governments to work if the central government is inconsistent and provides no guidelines," she added.
The commitment had also been followed by Coordinating Maritime Affairs Minister Luhut Panjaitan, who said the target is set to be accomplished by 2025.
"The government will provide a budget of up to $1 billion annually to execute the strategy," Luhut told to Antara news agency.
The strategy is part of the national action plan for waste management in oceans, in conjunction with the United Nations Environmental Program.
Luhut said plastic waste is threatening fisheries and coral reefs all over the world, and that it also endangers marine tourism in Indonesia.
"The ones who are affected by this are local residents, because tourists won't come back to plastic-contaminated destinations," he said.