Imagine a night sky dotted with plastic waste. Would it still be romantic to look at? Certainly not, the idea is repulsive and absurd. We experience a similar repulsiveness when we see the picturesque north of Pakistan littered with waste. Murree, for example, has become a hill station of waste. Nestle Pakistan has recently taken the initiative to address this issue of waste management in the tourist rich regions of Pakistan.
Nestle Pakistan has started from the top, its Clean Hunza Project is the first step in the direction of promoting tourism in the country. Hunza is the most attractive tourist destination in the Gilgit-Baltistan region. With its elevation around 8000 feet above sea level, it entertains around a million tourists every year. The valley could get a bigger share of international tourism by adopting sustainable tourism.
To make Hunza waste-free Nestle Pakistan has installed compressing and bailing machines to process the plastic waste for transportation and recycle. This process of recycling will have a very healthy impact on the environment of Hunza as well as the overall beauty of the place. As part of the initiative, Nestle will also donate 10,000 reusable bags to the Hunza community.
What is commendable here is that Nestle Pakistan has not started this drive for commercial or brand promotional purposes. The plan is purely focused to make tourism in Hunza sustainable while protecting the environment at the same time. To reduce the environmental impact of various kinds of packaging waste Nestle has also planned to make 100% of its packaging reusable by the year 2025.
On my visit to Gilgit-Baltistan a couple of months ago. I found Hunza a lot better in cleanliness than the other parts of the north particularly Murree and its adjoining Gilliyat region. I hope that Nestle Pakistan will spread this effort to those regions where the situation is much worse. By 2025 Nestle Pakistan aims to collect around 1000 tons of plastic and paper packaging waste for recycling from Hunza. Waste management is one of the biggest health and environmental concern in Pakistan. Karachi is suffering from a waste management crisis. The government should take a leaf out of Nestle’s book to solve the waste management issues in the country.