Environmental damage cannot be separated from the activities of humans who live in it, both through the exploitation of nature to the waste and waste it generates. Environmental damage, such as in the Mangrove forest located in Muara Gembong, Bekasi Regency, is caused by community activities that take natural resources without paying attention to conservation. In addition, the waste generated by the community also contributes to environmental damage.
Head of the Regional Research and Development Agency (Balitbangda) Bekasi Regency, Ismanto, said that out of around 7,000 hectares of forest mangrove in Bekasi Regency, only five percent are still in good condition. Meanwhile, waste management that is still using the open dumping, only able to manage 26 percent of the waste to the final disposal site (TPA). In fact, said Ismanto, waste production by the community in Bekasi Regency reaches 2,700 tons per day.
“Bekasi has a TPA of around 10 hectares, currently the system is still an open dumping system, where the garbage heap in Bekasi is more than 2,700 tons per day, while the capacity of the region, we calculate, is only capable of 26 percent of the waste that is managed to date. to the landfill. Where is the landfill with the system open dumping very dangerous in the future,” he explained.
Community behavior also affects environmental conditions related to waste. Sugianto Tandio, from Greenhope, said that single-use plastic consumption has increased during the pandemic and the implementation of community activity restrictions (PPKM), because people are not allowed to buy and eat at outlets or restaurants.
Sugianto Tandio, who created the eco-friendly plastic technology, ecoplast made from cassava, hopes that people will start thinking about using more environmentally friendly packaging.
“With the COVID-19 pandemic, plastic consumption has actually increased. So everything that is reused tends to be able to transmit diseases, transmit viruses. So now all of us, with the pandemic, food orders have risen sharply, all with single-use plastics,” continued Sugianto Tandio.
Surabaya Zero Waste Community Activist, Hanie Ismail, said that most of the garbage that people throw away ends up in the sea, and some gets stuck in the roots. mangrove which can inhibit growth and kill life mangrove. Hanie invites people to start changing their behavior, so that plastic waste does not damage the environment, especially the ecosystem mangrove which is home to various species.
“We have to start to change our principles. We have to put the trash in its proper place. Because we only use plastic waste once, the effect is 100 to 500 years, because it can only be decomposed. If, for example, we just throw it into it (river), it means that we are sinning against the environment, especially mangrove. Suppose we don’t always take care of it (mangrove)Yes, that plastic waste will always be wrapped around them (mangrove) and will die,” he explained.
Researcher in the field of waste, and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Indonesia Solid Waste Association (InSWA), Sri Merdekasari, said that waste management can be started from the habit of properly disposing of waste in the provided places. Furthermore, the waste must be separated from their respective homes, so that it can be managed more easily when taken to the final disposal site.
Sri Bebassari said that handling waste, especially plastic packaging, should also be the responsibility of producers through after-consumer programs. According to Sri Bebassari, producers must provide education on how to use a product, and how product packaging that is no longer used must be disposed of so as not to pollute the environment.
“Plastic is the same, we have never been taught how to dispose of it and how to use it. So it’s not the plastic that’s wrong, but how to use it and how to dispose of it, now it’s the responsibility of who is educating this, it should be the one who sells it. Don’t sell but don’t educate,” explained Sri Merdeka. [pr/em]