Image: Australian anti-litter campaign. Credit: wsroc.com.au
The Badung government has decided to take action against people throwing trash onto the side of the roads, sewers and rivers. Hotspots will be monitored and people sanctioned with a maximum fine of Rp. 25 million.
This is related to Regional Regulation Number 7 of 2016 concerning Public Order and Peace of Society. In addition to polluting the environment, it is not uncommon for garbage to accumulate in rivers or sewers which triggers water overflowing from drains and flooding. Recently there massive flooding again around the Kuta and Seminyak areas.
“People who are caught dumping garbage into rivers and sewers will be fined with a maximum penalty of Rp. 25 million or three months imprisonment,” said PP Badung Chief of Police, IGAK Suryanegara, Friday (1/18).
Suryanegara stressed that his team would oversee locations that had been targeted by irresponsible persons in the past. This is not just ‘bluffing’, he told Bali Express.
His party, being the enforcer of the Regional Regulation, has partnered with the local Environmental and Hygiene Service (DLHK). They have already imposed sanctions on several offenders through a trial of what they call ‘Light Crimes’ aka misdemeanours.
“We already fine them if we catch them dumping trash. We have done this in Jimbaran and Kuta by imposing a fine of Rp. 1 million in accordance with the provisions of the regulation,” he said.
According to Suryanegara, this is all in order to realize environmental sustainability and mutual comfort of all citizens. Plus, Badung is the main tourist destination on the Island of the Gods and we don’t want the place looking like a slum. “So we hope this will provide a deterrent to the people who are still littering,” he explained.
Head of Water Resources (SDA) Office of Public Works and Public Housing (PUPR) Badung, Anak Agung Dalem, also admitted that he often had to deal with garbage that had piled up in sewers and rivers because the accumulated garbage causes flooding.
“Almost every day there is a buildup of garbage in the rivers and gutters. Today it’s clean and tomorrow back again,” he complained.
“It seems that public awareness is still lacking and the river is still the top spot to dump waste,” he explained.
Gung Dalem invited the public to orderly dispose of garbage at the designated places. “Let’s keep the environment clean, especially rivers and waterways that are very vital to us all,” he said.