In 2017, the Malaysian Plastics Manufacturers Association (MPMA), Dow, and Global Environment Center (GEC) sponsor RIVER Ranger Program to Educate Students on River Waste. It was designed to provide the students with a hands-on experience to witness how their actions can impact the cleanliness of rivers and consequently, the ocean. The RIVER Ranger Program is a comprehensive curriculum that not only provides insights on the river ecosystem but every aspect of river pollution management including solid waste. GEC provided the content and tools to participating students for the initiative.
“MPMA is a signatory to the Declaration of the Global Plastics Associations for Solutions on Marine Litter. We signed the declaration to show our commitment to manage waste from entering earth’s ocean. This begins with educating our youth not to throw litter into rivers, as rivers carry waste to oceans.”
—Datuk Lim Kok Boon, President, MPMA
The activities helped the participating students initiate best management practices like recycling, upcycling, pollution reduction and river monitoring in their schools. As part of the two-month program, students were first provided information on the status of Malaysian rivers and the challenges posed by river pollution issues; measures that students can take to protect rivers; river water observations and practical sessions which were conducted outdoors where students were required to do physical, chemical and biological testing of water quality. Subsequently students were required to undertake activities upon returning to school, and the resulting reports from these activities were presented at the closing ceremony.
The goal was to empower youth to utilize the resources to continue environmental activities to maintain the environment and lessen the waste impact on rivers. The schools that participated in the MPMA-DOW-GEC RIVER Ranger Program were SMK Damansara Damai, SMK La Salle Petaling Jaya, SMK Taman Dato Harun, SMK Sultan Abdul Samad and Sri Bestari Private School.