Coral Triangle Day encourages collective action to tackle ocean plastic pollution
This strong call for action is a critical one as there is already a staggering eight million metric tons of plastic dumped into the ocean each year, and this figure will double in just 10 years if nothing is done about it.
According to the journal Science, three CT6 countries are among the top contributors to ocean plastic pollution; Indonesia produces 187.2 million tons; the Philippines, 83.4 million tons; and Malaysia, 22.9 million tons (Jambeck, et.al.). Ocean plastic pollution may negatively impact as much as 130 million people in the Coral Triangle region who directly depend on ocean resources for food and livelihood.
“This brings to light the immediate need for regional and collective action among governments and industries and to create more awareness among consumers on how small changes such as saying no to single-use plastics can make a big difference in our marine environment,” says Jackie Thomas, WWF Coral Triangle Programme Leader.
That is why for this year’s Coral Triangle Day, WWF and partners aimed to tackle ocean plastic pollution by conducting the #SayNo2Plastic Instagram contest, which encouraged the public to reduce their plastic footprint by posting creative photos and videos of pointless single-use plastic products and the personal changes they are making to help reduce ocean plastic pollution for a chance to win prizes. Winners will be announced on 11 June.
“Through regional platforms such as the Coral Triangle Day, we aim to reach out to as many individuals as possible and inspire them to make small but crucial changes in their lifestyle to help protect and conserve our valuable coastal and marine resources,” adds Thomas.
Now on its sixth year, the Coral Triangle Day is coordinated by the Coral Triangle Initiative on Coral Reefs, Fisheries and Food Security (CTI-CFF) in partnership with the CT6 National Coordinating Committees (NCCs), development partners, and collaborators.
Themed ‘Curbing Marine Debris – Reduce Your Plastic Waste!’, this year’s celebration brings ocean lovers together across the region to demonstrate that giving up single-use plastics in their lifestyle is not only easy, but necessary.
Visit www.coraltriangleday.org for more information.
Paolo Mangahas, Senior Manager for Marketing and Communications, WWF Coral Triangle Programme.