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Jun 15, 2018 / 18:06

Quang Ninh takes actions for zero-waste tour in Ha Long

The Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Center for Supporting Green Development (GreenHub) and the Live and Learn environmental education organization co-organized the program “Action for a green Ha Long: Towards zero-waste tour programs” in Ha Long Bay, Quang Ninh province on June 14.

It was part of the Ha Long-Cat Ba Alliance, a three-year initiative financed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), responding to the World Environment Day 2018.
Ha Long Bay
Ha Long Bay
More than 100 people took part in this year’s program. They were representatives from cruisers, travel agents, tourism and hotel colleges, non-governmental organizations and press agencies.
Nguyen Huyen Anh, deputy head of the Ha Long Bay Management Board, said the locality has paid attention to preserving and promoting the values of the bay by carrying out a national strategy on green growth and a project to improve the environment in the province. Applying science and technology in environmental protection has been promoted as well, she said.
Equipped with a strategic vision for developing the sea-based economy, the province in 2014 approved an Overall Plan for tourism development to 2020 with a vision to 2030. Under the scheme, the sea space in Quang Ninh is divided into five zones, which are the strictly preserved Ha Long Bay. 
They also discussed measures to support tourism companies to apply a “zero waste” model in their business. Local firms need to choose the most rational action to cut the amount of waste while saving operation costs.
Volunteers collect rubbish, buoys in some islands in Ha Long Bay. Photo: Vietnam +
Volunteers collect rubbish, buoys in some islands in Ha Long Bay. Photo: Vietnam +
According to Mission Director for USAID Vietnam Michael Greene, this was the fourth program of its kind. Volunteers joining in the previous events collected four tons of waste, mostly float buoys and plastic garbage. 
The tourism sector in the northern coastal province of Quang Ninh has grown at a fast pace in recent years, establishing its important role in the province’s economy. 
Quang Ninh is endowed with natural advantages for sea and island tourism. It is home to the Ha Long and Bai Tu Long Bays, the Ha Long Bay National Park and some islands.
The Ha Long Bay has twice been recognized as a World Natural Heritage site by UNESCO. The heritage site has become a magnet drawing visitors to Quang Ninh. 
With stunning natural landscapes and more than 500 tourist vessels, the Ha Long Bay is one of the leading tourist attractions in Vietnam. The World Natural Heritage site welcomes some 4 million tourists every year. Thus, investment in waste treatment and management system is significant to protect Ha Long Bay’s environment.