WAZA Members stand together

Date: 2018/06/05


WAZA Member Zoos and Aquariums Rally Against Plastic Pollution

United Nations (UN) World Environment Day took place on 5 June with a focus on beating plastic pollution, with India serving as the global host for this year's events.


World Environment Day is the UN's most important day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment. "Beat Plastic Pollution", the theme for World Environment Day 2018, is a call to action for everyone to come together to combat one of the great environmental challenges of our time.


To that end, two World Association of Zoos and Aquariums (WAZA) member institutions in India committed to a Letter of Agreement seeking to end the use of single-use plastic in or on zoo grounds by 2020. The National Zoological Park in New Delhi and Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens in Mysore took up the agreement and will ensure they end the use of single-use plastics within the zoo, while also encouraging behaviour change in their visitors as well.


The WAZA Letter of Agreement will also see the zoos implement private sector partnerships to support the activities and will attempt to engage with political leaders to take action in beating plastic pollution.


The National Zoological Park, New Delhi welcomes around 10,000 visitors in a single day, providing a prime opportunity to influence and encourage behaviour change. The Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens recorded an average attendance of 237,000 per month in 2017.


On top of this, the National Zoological Park in committed to a day of raising awareness and getting commitments towards ending the use of single-use plastic and re-greening the environment, to celebrate World Environment Day. School groups were brought in to the zoo specifically to take part in the World Environment Day activities. The events on the day involved an inaugural pledge of "no plastic," a signature campaign - collecting signatures in support of beating plastic pollution, and a litter pick-up drive on the zoo premises, as well as a tree planting ceremony involving the zoo director, school children and visitors.


WAZA CEO Doug Cress, said: "World Environment Day is a very important day to remind us about the importance of protecting the planet. As part of WAZA's Memorandum of Understanding with United Nations Environment, we are striving to ensure our members commit to sustainable practices by 2023. We are delighted by the activities New Delhi zoo hosted, as well as the commitments made by our members to ban single-use plastic."



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