Science academy urges war vs plastic
Rainier Allan Ronda (The Philippine Star) - July 18, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The National Academy of Science and Technology (NAST) has rallied the country’s scientific and innovation community to wage a war against plastic.

In a resolution issued at the end of the two-day 41st Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) at the EDSA Shangri-La Manila in Mandaluyong City last week, the country’s highest recognition and scientific advisory body pushed for more efforts in the pursuit of zero waste initiatives as well as support of legislation on the phaseout of non-biodegradable single-use plastic materials.

The NAST also called for the acceleration of research and development on single-use biodegradable packaging materials.

The management of plastic waste was one of the priority concerns addressed by the NAST as it held the 41st ASM with the theme, “Caring for the Country’s Carrying Capacity.”

NAST said the global effort at managing the world’s plastic wastes was one of the concerns sought to be addressed by the sustainable development goals, out of 17 SDGs set by the United Nations General Assembly in 2015 for the year 2030. These are part of Resolution 70/1 of the UN General Assembly, the 2030 Agenda.

The NAST said the Philippine scientific community should exert more effort at funding and pursuing R&D to redesign plastic and chemical additives to make plastic more recyclable and safer.

Local and national governments should craft more systematic collection, reuse and disposal of recyclable materials in cities and municipalities, it said.

Business establishments, meanwhile, could implement strategies to reduce the use of plastic materials in products and services such as plastic straws and utensils in food establishments.

NAST also said it was time to fund comparative analysis on the use of incineration, waste-to-energy and other alternative approaches as a possible solution to plastic wastes.

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