(Ho Chi Minh City)
In time for the Plastic-Free July, TONTOTON has received its first batch of certification for 75.38 metric tons of orphan plastic waste following the Ocean-Bound Plastic Neutrality Standard set out by Zero Plastics Oceans and audited by Control Union.
This means 75.38 plastic credits available for corporates and brands who wish to reduce plastic pollution by collecting non-recyclable plastic alongside recycled plastic used in their products. Leave nothing and no one behind. It’s a way for companies to empower impact and to choose responsibility.
These plastic credits can be purchased by companies either to responsibly manage plastic waste or as an added impact and purpose to their products and become part of their sustainability or CSR reports.
Cumulatively, these 75 tons of orphan plastic wastes were collected from Phu Quoc and Hon Son islands in the southern part of Vietnam.
Phu Quoc island is the biggest in Vietnam with more than 100,000 residents and over 3,000,000 tourists annually.
According to a report published by WWF and USAid in June 2018, in Phu Quoc,
- 155 tons of the total waste is generated daily
- 32.1 tons of this daily waste is plastic
- 11.4 tons of plastic waste is discharged directly into the environment daily
The existing recycling business in Phú Quốc Island focuses only on high-value plastic bottles and tin cans, leaving the island with a growing visible plastic waste problem. This requires an urgent solution. The rapidly increasing volume of orphan plastic accumulating on the island is destined to become marine litter if not addressed immediately.
Meanwhile, Hon Son island is considered as one of the most beautiful islands in Kiên Giang. Hon Son is home to more than 9,000 households and received 214,000 visitors in 2019. Hon Son’s pristine natural beauty is under threat.
Without proper waste management infrastructure, litter is burned openly or discarded directly into the ocean. The volume of plastic grows daily because of tidal marine litter washing up on its shores.
75 metric tons mean about 12 full trucks of mismanaged plastic wastes removed from the polluted environment and delivered to cement factories to be used as alternative fuel to coal, effectively reducing CO2 emissions by up to 25%. In this solution called co-processing, the plastic waste are destroyed together with its toxins and the ashes are then blended to the final cement product resulting to zero waste.
Through the help of local waste pickers and the communities, who then earn extra income and better work conditions from the daily clean-ups, we can hope to eventually bringing environmental justice back to these polluted coastal areas. All through a certified plastic credit system, a truly financially sustainable solution that enables the funding of projects that creates circularity for non-recyclable plastic wastes.