Under the USAID-funded Municipal Waste Recycling Program (MWRP), DIG is managing a portfolio of 30 grantees implementing solid waste management and recycling activities to reduce marine plastic pollution in Asia. One such grantee, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), has assisted 20 major hotels in Vietnam with establishing voluntary targets to reduce their plastic consumption and set up recycling operations. Mohamed Oughdoud, the Executive Assistant Manager of the Novotel Phu Quoc Resort, worked with WWF to identify alternatives to plastic products commonly used at the resort and produced a comprehensive plan outlining the resort’s commitments. The plan demonstrated that key plastic alternatives would economically benefit the resort and the Novotel has since signed an official commitment to transparently reduce plastic, including: providing paper straws and cups to guests; eliminating the use of plastic takeaway containers; reducing plastic water bottles; and separating waste at source.
MWRP grantees have fostered similar partnerships with over 50 private sector organizations, including Dow Chemical, Nestlé, and Coca-Cola, to integrate the private sector more effectively into solid waste management. Through these partnerships and other grantee activities, MWRP has, thus far, diverted 11,500 metric tons of plastic waste from marine environments and has directly and indirectly benefited over 8.5 million people in Indonesia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, and Vietnam.