A report on the pilot project, under the theme 'Clean Cities, Blue Ocean', funded by USAID's flagship program, which aims to combat ocean plastic pollution, has been released after eight months of operation.

The program is now being rolled out to different schools, including secondary and high school levels.

An exhibition of kitchen waste treatment plans at school in Da Nang.

More than 2,000 educational sessions and 65 events showing ways to treat waste along with the 3Rs (reduce, re-use and recycle) were organized to raise awareness among school students, teachers and the community, along with big pushes on social media.

Tran Mai Trang, from the Live&Learn center, said the program had helped reduce by 17% the amount of waste released into the environment, while also collecting valuable organic waste for composting.

“The program introduced effective solutions in management of waste at school – an initial step to approach to ‘zero waste’ goal in the future. School students are aware of the importance of waste classification and environment protection by actions,” she said.

“Some schools included waste audits and waste reduction activities as part of their daily action program. Glass bottles and LED screens were used instead of plastic containers and backdrops, respectively,” she said.

Students were encouraged to bring food boxes and bottles to school rather than using single-use plastic ware, she added.

According to the report, the program collected 5.9 tons of organic waste, 5.8 tons of waste (paper, cans, metal) for recycling and 630kg electronic waste.

The program will now be rolled out to most of the other schools throughout the city, towards building Da Nang as a ‘green’ school brand in central Vietnam and a key example for other provinces and cites to follow.

The Tran Dai Nghia Primary School was the first in the city to pilot the waste treatment plans under the Waste-Free Schools model of the Building Healthy City (BHC) program – one of East Meets West Organization’s key programs in building a healthy and clean study environment for 12 primary schools.

The school applied a recycling kitchen system to reduce 60% of waste every month, saving USD 43 in garbage treatment fees, while producing 100kg of nutritional compost each month.

According to experts from Da Nang University, 80% of the daily 1,100-tonne waste in Da Nang could be recycled by promoting waste classification at source.

At least 400 tons of organic waste, of which 50% was biodegradable, could be collected by recycling sorting every day.

Lagom Vietnam Company and TetraPak said ten tons of milk cartons from schools in Da Nang are available for collection for recycling every day.

Source: VNA