16 November 2021
The SEA of Solutions (SoS) is an annual partnership event convened by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia (COBSEA) through the SEA Circular Project supported by the Government of Sweden. It aims to reduce plastic pollution at its source in the region. The platform facilitates multi-sectoral dialogue and collaboration that provides market-transforming policy, business, and technology solutions and connects stakeholders in the plastics value chain.
SoS 2021 focused on revitalising actions to prevent and reduce plastic waste by exploring policies, partnerships, innovative technologies, and financing that address current challenges while mitigating the potential impacts of future disruptive global events under the theme of “Accelerating solutions to reduce plastic waste”. This year, Malaysia co-hosted the show.
Minister of KASA Dato’ Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man delivering his speech at the Opening Session.
Among the highlights of SoS 2021 was the soft launch of the National Policy and Action Plan on Marine Litter 2021-2030 by the Honourable Dato’ Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man, Malaysia’s Minister of Environment and Water (KASA). The national document, which KASA formulated with technical assistance from MIMA, responds to Malaysia’s commitment to addressing the pressing issue of marine litter pollution. The policy will guide concrete actions in Malaysia in the implementation of urgent interventions to address the issue.
MIMA introduced the national marine litter policy and action plan during the launch.
Following the launch was an introduction of the document by Cheryl Rita, Head of the Centre for Coastal and Marine Environment MIMA. As the Policy Lead under the Malaysian SEA Circular Project, she has been instrumental in providing technical support in developing the policy. In her deliberations, she highlighted the gist of the policy and action plan and targeted outcomes; before moderating a Panel Discussion Session on “Tackling Marine Plastic Pollution: From Policy to Practical Solutions”.
The panel line up of the soft launch.
The forum featured Mahesh Pradhan, the Interim COBSEA Coordinator; Dr Vong Sok, the Head of the Environment Division at the ASEAN Secretariat; Dr Anjali Acharya, Senior Environmental Specialist from the World Bank; and Jamalulail Abu Bakar, the Undersecretary of the Environmental Management Division of KASA. The session discussed practical solutions and the way forward to tackle marine plastic pollution. The urgency to tackle plastic waste pollution has escalated further during this pandemic. The whole of nations approach is the key to strategic outcomes in reducing plastic pollution throughout the value chain. The session focused on national and regional perspectives and experiences on the way forward in tackling marine plastic pollution.
Cheryl Rita moderating the panel session.
MIMA is happy to have contributed to formulating the national policy and action plan 2021-2030 and will continue to work hand-in-hand with KASA and stakeholders to address marine litter pollution in Malaysia.