Clean Up Jakarta Day 2017: Five Years of Tack­ling The Cap­i­tal City's Rub­bish Prob­lem

Since 2013, Clean Up Jakarta Day has been gal­va­niz­ing lo­cal and ex­pa­tri­ate com­mu­ni­ties in Jakarta to help solve the cap­i­tal city’s pro­longed waste man­age­ment cri­sis. This year, 100,000 vol­un­teers par­tic­i­pated to re­mind In­done­sians that the is­sue is far fr

Indonesia Expat - - Contents -

From plas­tic waste to river pol­lu­tion, Jakarta has long strug­gled with the prob­lem of trash. Last year, the cap­i­tal city re­port­edly pro­duced as much as 7,000 tonnes of rub­bish ev­ery day, rais­ing mul­ti­ple con­cerns about the gov­ern­ment’s waste man­age­ment abil­ity and most im­por­tantly the way peo­ple are ad­dress­ing this is­sue. For this rea­son, var­i­ous lo­cal or­ga­niz­ers have come up with dif­fer­ent forms of ac­tivism to raise the pub­lic’s aware­ness about waste. One or­ga­nizer who has has taken the city’s tremen­dous prob­lem into her own hands is Clean Up Jakarta Day’s An­gela Richard­son.

Founded in 2013, An­gela Richard­son sought to en­cour­age the lo­cal com­mu­nity to di­rectly con­front Jakarta’s waste man­age­ment cri­sis by lit­er­ally clear­ing the rub­bish in the city for one day. Years later, Clean Up Jakarta has man­aged to gather thou­sands of vol­un­teers to act as sorters; pick­ing through all sorts of trash, rang­ing from plas­tics and glass to tex­tiles and metal.

This year, as many as 30,000 vol­un­teers par­tic­i­pated in the cleanup act, or­ga­nized in around 70 dif­fer­ent lo­ca­tions across the cap­i­tal city and the Thou­sand Is­lands. Vol­un­teers gath­ered at their regis­tered site early in the morn­ing and re­ceived two sep­a­rate bags, one for re­cy­clables and the other for non­re­cy­clable waste ma­te­ri­als. After around two hours of col­lect­ing waste, vol­un­teers re­turned to the meet­ing point to sort and com­bine all that was re­trieved. The re­cy­clables were do­nated di­rectly to waste banks across Jakarta with the Min­istry of San­i­ta­tion’s as­sis­tance in Jakarta.

Mem­bers at this year’s event ranged from school chil­dren to of­fice em­ploy­ees, with youth and en­vi­ron­men­tal as­so­ci­a­tions par­tic­i­pat­ing as well as in­di­vid­u­als de­ter­mined to fight the lo­cal waste is­sue. What started out as sim­ple ac­tivism trans­formed into a large plat­form for peo­ple aligned in achiev­ing sim­i­lar goals.

“Many great or­ga­ni­za­tions run their own cleanups through­out the year and we call on all of them, in­clud­ing schools and com­pa­nies, to join forces on one day, with one united voice for a cleaner cap­i­tal,” Richard­son said dur­ing the event on Sun­day, 8 Oc­to­ber 2017.

Ac­tors Mike Lewis and Marissa Anita, en­vi­ron­men­tal­ist Dav­ina Veron­ica Hari­ardi and tele­vi­sion host Falentina Cot­ton were also present at the event. Dur­ing the post event ac­tiv­i­ties, Vice Gover­nor- elect San­di­aga Uno also came to the stage to greet the crowd and en­cour­aged par­tic­i­pants to keep work­ing to­gether in cre­at­ing a cleaner Jakarta. One of In­done­sia’s most renowned rock bands Slank con­cluded the cel­e­bra­tion by per­form­ing a num­ber of their hit sin­gles.

Clean Up Jakarta Day has also in­spired many other cities. Cities like Ban­dung, Ta­ba­long and Ban­jar­masin col­lec­tively aimed to cre­ate a cleaner and health­ier en­vi­ron­ment by or­ga­niz­ing cleanups on the same day. There were a to­tal of 22 prov­inces that joined this year’s cleanup with around 100,000 vol­un­teers. With the ad­di­tion of these cities, more par­tic­i­pants were able to learn about the im­por­tance of reusing, re­duc­ing and re­cy­cling and the detri­men­tal ef­fects of waste on the en­vi­ron­ment.

For the or­ga­niz­ers of Clean Up Jakarta Day, the

2017 cleanup was a huge suc­cess. The next step is to ed­u­cate, in­still pos­i­tivism and ap­ply re­spon­si­ble waste man­age­ment prin­ci­ples; the general pop­u­lace should be en­cour­aged to ap­ply the skills they learn on Clean Up Jakarta Day and use these prin­ci­ples on a daily ba­sis. There is no way to re­duce the vol­ume of trash in the city with­out daily vig­i­lance.

Clean Up Jakarta Day is made pos­si­ble by Risco En­ergy Group and At­lantic, Gulf and Pa­cific Com­pany (AG&P): a joint ven­ture of AG&P, a global leader in in­fras­truc­ture so­lu­tions and mod­u­lar­ized prod­ucts for the en­ergy, re­sources and in­dus­trial sec­tors; and Risco En­ergy Group, an in­de­pen­dent, pri­vately owned en­ergy in­vest­ment com­pany fo­cus­ing on oil and gas in the Asia re­gion. The event is spon­sored by PT Adaro En­ergy and PT Pi­nang Coal and is brought to you by In­done­sia Ex­pat, a free English lan­guage pub­li­ca­tion in circulation since 2009.

For those who are in­ter­ested in vol­un­teer­ing for next year’s cleanup please visit www.cleanup­jakar­ta­ or send an email to cleanupjk­t­day@in­done­si­a­ex­

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