Lebanese Youth Urge Lebanese to Use Less Plastic Bags

IndyACT and IndyYOUTH joins the Global Day of Action against Waste and Incineration

1st of December 2008, Beirut, Lebanon.  As thousands of government officials, civil society advocates and other participants gather in Poznan, Poland to negotiate a new climate change treaty, a global alliance of public interest groups press for decisive steps to cut green house gas (GHG) emissions from dirty waste disposal practices. Groups from around the world unite to urge governments to adopt Zero Waste strategies, including the reduced use of plastic bags, as a way to fight climate change.

As part of the yearly Global Day of Action against Waste and Incineration, at least 165 groups from 39 countries seeking environmental, climate and economic justice organized activities to highlight the above message. In Lebanon, IndyYOUTH group, ‘People Against Plastics’ (PAPs), distributed cloth bags and urged people to use less plastics bags that usually end up in our forests, rivers and sea. They also opened a banner that read the campaign message. IndyACT, the supporting organization, joined the event.

“People have to realize the damage plastic bags do on the environment,” stated Dima Mabsout, an IndyYouther from PAPs. “We have to take action to prevent the systematic poisoning of our ecosystems from chemicals and particles coming out of the plastic bags.”

“The Lebanese government is ignoring the cheapest and easiest way to avoid greenhouse gas emissions that are causing climate change,” Wael Hmaidan, Executive Director of IndyACT said.  “Implementing a national reduce-reuse-recycle program would cut emissions as much as taking half the country’s cars off the road,” he pointed out.

Zero Waste, IndyACT explained, aims to reduce to zero the volume and toxicity of materials being disposed to landfills and incinerators by creating a closed-loop economy where all discards are reused, repaired, recycled or composted and implementing clean production, extended producer responsibility and other policies to redesign goods that cannot be safely reused, recycled or composted.

Zero Waste, they added, will put a lid to the wasting and warming cycle that requires new resources to be pulled out of the earth, processed in factories, shipped around the world, and burned or buried in our communities – a process that leaves a trail of GHGs and other toxic health and environmental pollutants.

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