The government is expected
to receive a petition that it should impose a nationwide ban or bylaw on the use of plastic bags.

Since last week, 800 people have signed the petition online and many more on paper as part of the campaign to phase out the use of single-use plastic bags in Vanuatu.

People living in and abroad Vanuatu have participated.

If the petition gets 1,000 signatures it will be presented to the Prime Minister, Minister of Climate Change and Environment, the Leader of Opposition, mayors of Port Vila and Luganville Town.

Few people who really want to see that the environment which humans depend entirely on for survival be protected, initiated this campaign using social media.

Georges Cumbo, Christelle Thieffry, Myriam Malao and Marcel Melterorong created a Facebook page to educate users about the environmental effects of plastic bags.

The Facebook page, ‘No plastic bag, plis’ now has 3,200 followers.

Announcing the campaign at the recently held National Environment Week in Port Vila, Thieffry said it is time Vanuatu moves to legislation to reduce the use of plastic bags and value re-usable shopping bags and local baskets.

“You see plastic bags everywhere you go; at the beach, in the ocean and on public road. It’s becoming a big problem.

“Plastic bags break easily.They take many years to decompose in the environment though millions of people are using them every day.

“It’s time people refrain from using plastic bags when they either go to the market or go shopping,” she stressed.

A million tonnes of plastic end up in the ocean, wrecking havoc on wildlife fisheries and tourism, according to the ‘No plastic bag, plis’ page.

Many countries around the world today have banned plastic bags thus, the petition urges Vanuatu for action.

The petition stated: “Plastic bags are polluting our oceans, killing tens of thousands of birds and marine animals each year.

“They are typically used once or twice for short time before they become waste and often litter.

“Banning single-use plastic bag in the islands is crucial because plastic pollution in the ocean is especially hard to address.”

People who care for the environment and want to say no to plastic bags are encouraged to join the campaign by signing the paper and online petition at the link: