Sisters Melati and Isabel Wijsen are on a mission to ban plastic bags in Bali. And you know what? They are succeeding with their ‘bye bye plastic bags’ campaign. There are many reports that the tourism and the garbage system in Bali is causing a environmental destruction. In the coming years we need to make positive changes with sustainable ideas. Young sisters Melati and Isabel and a lot of other young kids are the frontrunners and are changing the game.
Mass tourism in Bali
The island of Gods is truly a beautiful paradise with amazing waterfalls, lakes, mountains, beaches and beautiful smiling people. It is loved by a lot of people from all over the world. The numbers of visitors are even growing each year. A total of 1,555,609 foreign tourists have visited the island of Bali in the first 5 months last year. Yearly it can go up to 4 million foreign tourists, mostly Australians, Chinese and Japanese. Source
Plastic bags in Bali
It is known that a lot of international and national investors are seeing potential in Bali and are building high rise hotels everywhere. Rice fields are slowly disappearing, making its way for mass tourism. These big investors are putting profits above people and are taking advantage of cheap labor and cheap products. They don’t care about the environment and causing destruction in the island. In the end the money goes right into the pockets of the investors and nothing is giving back to the island and it’s people.
The mission that Melati and Isabel have against plastic bags in Bali can be seen as a symbol to fight against capitalist manifestations. This island needs more regulations to protect the land and it’s people.
On a mission
With their movement ‘bye bye to plastic bag’ they are on a mission to get Bali plastic bag free. The sisters wanted to get the Balinese government on board to execute their ideas. Unfortunalty the government wasn’t interested in first so they we’re looking for other ideas to create more awareness. They were writing letters to the governor everyday, but he didn’t take the time to respond. All their hard work finally paid off after all the petitions, beach cleanups and even a hungerstrike.
The governor of Bali commits to a plastic bag-free Bali by 2018.
I’m so proud of these two girls and all the other kids that are making these big steps in Bali. The island of Gods is a beautiful island and it would be devastating if it gets more and more and more polluted. At the age of 10 and 12 they decided to go for it.
“Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you’re too young or you won’t understand. We’re not telling you it’s going to be easy. We’re telling you it’s going to be worth it.”
Watch these two girls giving a inspiring Ted Talk speach.