Discussants celebrating World Environment Day in the capital said on Sunday that despite low per capita plastic consumption, Bangladesh was ranked among top 10 plastic polluted countries due to poor waste management.
Addressing a seminar as a part of Department of Environment’s concluding event of month-long celebration of the World Environment Day, they said recycling of plastics and polythene bags was a must to protect the country and its bay from acute plastic pollution.
Globally the World Environment Day is celebrated on June 5.
Presenting a keynote on plastic pollution, challenges and sustainable development, UNDP’s programme specialist on environmental sustainability and energy Arif Faisal said production of plastics contributes to greenhouse gas emission while pollutes soil and water, affecting the government’s SDG achievements.
BUET Professor Izaj Ahmed, another keynote speaker, said plastic recycling industries could capitalise huge profits in Bangladesh as cheap manpower and raw materials were available here.
DoE director Ziaul Haque requested the government not to permit import of refuge derived fuel, a value-added recycled plastic, as it would discourage local plastic recyclers.
Putting emphasis on good waste management, Bangladesh Plastic Goods Manufacturers and Exporters Association president Jashim Uddin said segregation of trashed plastics from its sources was crucial for recycling.
Environment, forest and climate change minister Anisul Islam Mahmud said popularisation of the economically viable alternatives was crucial to replace polythene bags.
DoE director general Sultan Ahmed chaired the programme while MoEFCC additional secretary Billal Hossain, DoE deputy director general Quazi Sarwar Imtiaz Hashmi also spoke, among others.
The guests later handed over medals and certificates among participants of different cultural competitions hosted by DoE.