Two teenage sisters have taken a stand against pollution in Bali – and they’ve convinced the government to ban plastic bags by the year 2018. The island suffers from a crushing plastic pollutionproblem, so Isabel and Melati Wijsen decided to take action and start Bye Bye Plastic Bags to mobilize other kids and adults to work toward a cleaner Bali. To achieve the goal, the girls have organized beach clean-ups, put on a fashion show, given a TED talk, gone on a hunger strike, and met with the UN Secretary General.
“In Bali, we generate 680 cubic meters of plastic garbage every day. That’s about a 14-story building. And when it comes to plastic bags, less than 5 percent get recycled,” said Isabel.
Plastic doesn’t simply litter the lush island landscapes; it poses a major health hazard. According to theROLE Foundation, plastic waste in Bali is often burned, which releases methane and other toxins that have been connected to cancer and birth defects. If plastic bags and packaging continue to be consumed – but rarely recycled – the Ellen MacArthur Foundation predicts that by 2050, there will bemore plastic than fish in the ocean.
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