INTERVIEW: Can Hong Kongers Say NO To Single-Use Plastics For 1 Day? EcoDriver Sherry Fung-Wong Says YES!
Tell us more about No Single Use Plastic Awareness Day campaign.
No Single Use Plastic Awareness Day will take place for the first time in Hong Kong on the 30th of May. This is part of our Enough Plastic campaign, which I hope you have been seeing on social media! EcoDrive has partnered with local charity Hong Kong New Youth Energy Think Tank to enlist the support of 60 local celebrities* to help remind us all on the perils of single-use plastic and to inspire personal habit changes.
What is the purpose of the campaign?
Enough Plastic is very much an awareness campaign to encourage people to reduce the amount of single-use plastic in their lives; to be mindful about what they are consuming and to do away with unnecessary waste, albeit one small step at a time.
Why did you choose the medium of photography? And why feature celebrities?
Social media plays a massive part in our lives and we wanted to work with celebrities because they have persuasive power as people look up to them and follow them. As the celebrities give out facts and tips on the reduction of single-use plastic and say “Enough Plastic!”, we are hoping their millions of followers will do the same. We were very fortunate to work with award winning photographer, Wing Shya, who readily jumped at the opportunity to help spread our message and has created very bold visual statements that we hope, catch people’s attention. After all a picture tells a thousand words.
Why focus on ‘Single-Use Plastic’, when there are so many other pressing issues?
At EcoDrive we understand there is so much that needs to be done to take better care of our Earth, but we are very focused on the reduction of single-use plastics because we want to put all our efforts not just into raising awareness, but more importantly to drive change. As a group of mothers we feel that the problem of plastic is growing and our internal drive to help the next generation is incredibly strong since “we do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we simply borrow it from our children.”
How did your collaboration with New Youth Energy Thing Tank come about?
We were approached by Real Ting, the Vice President of the charity. The New Youth Energy Think Tank fosters youth development and encourages its community to participate in social affairs and public services. This year they decided they wanted to focus on sustainability and believed in what EcoDrive represents and thought we would be a good fit. We felt the same! One of our core aims is to educate the next generation and with their comprehensive network within the youth community, the charity really is the perfect partner for this campaign.
Can Hong Kong conquer its plastic problems without regulation change?
I think that’s a complex question. Regulation change would be very helpful as it would become mandatory to reduce our waste or force related parties to find common ground and work together to find a solution to the problem. In the meantime I believe companies are in their small ways, trying to be more responsible in sourcing or researching into more sustainable materials. The pace might not be as fast as we would like, but without our encouragement and the consumers voicing that we would like to see less single-use plastic products or less packaging, it is easy for the companies to be complacent about the issue. As individuals we also have the power to vote with our dollar and be conscious about our choices and the consequences of our choices. By no means do we insist on people living a plastic free lifestyle, however, just to be aware and rethink then reduce your single-use plastic one piece at a time. Start small, start now.
HOW TO GET INVOLVED: Join Single-Use Plastic Awareness Day – say NO to Single-Use Plastics on May 30 2019!
*Participating celebrities include Aaron Kwok, Donnie Yen, Sammi Cheng, Karena Lam, Richie Jen & Miriam Yeung
As told to Sonalie Figueiras, Green Queen Editor-in-Chief. Lead image courtesy of EcoDrive.