17 May 2018, Delhi: The 19th Edition of IIFA Weekend & Awards 2018 and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) have come together to promote the campaign, “Beat Plastic Pollution”, the theme for this year’s World Environment Day is to combat one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time. The message is: If you can’t reuse it, refuse it!
UNEP continues its partnership with IIFA this year with a collaborative advocacy campaign to tackle the pressing issue of plastic pollution, under the aegis of Greening the IIFA.
The campaign is a clarion call for action to come together and consider how we can make changes in our everyday lives to reduce the heavy burden of plastic pollution on our natural habitat, our oceans, our wildlife – and our own health.
The goal is to inspire people to search for the kind of solutions that lead to sustainable behaviour change upstream. Additionally, the campaign will provide momentum to beat plastic pollution and inspire innovators, activists and leaders worldwide to do more than just clean up existing plastics, but also focus our action upstream.
IIFA has always promoted activities that make our world a better place to live in. Since 2007, IIFA has adopted the green carpet as a show of support and to create awareness about environmental concerns. While plastic has many valuable uses, we have become over-reliant on single-use or disposable plastic – with severe environmental consequences. Keeping this in mind, IIFA strongly endorses UNEP’s campaign call: ‘If you can’t re-use it, refuse it.’
Endorsing the partnership, Atul Bagai, Head, United Nations Environment Programme Country Office, India said, “Most events have a red carpet, but how the red carpet turned into an iconic green at IIFA almost ten years ago is a testament to UNEP’s collaboration with IIFA. At a time, when no one spoke about environmental issues, that too at glitzy events, IIFA did through its legion of celebrities and continues to date. We have joined hands again to spread awareness at a critical juncture, when India is gearing up to celebrate World Environment Day on June 5 to Beat Plastic Pollution.”
UNEP’s Goodwill ambassador Dia Mirza and long-standing supporter of environmental conservation said, “Whether we are actors, cricketers, doctors or teachers, we are first citizens of the Earth. The onus is on us to protect our environment. The everyday convenience of single-use plastic – such as straws, plastic bags, plastic bottles, spoons etc is wreaking havoc on the environment. Every year, the world uses 500 billion plastic bags, which will last in the environment for over 500 years! It’s time to wake up to the urgency and Beat Plastic Pollution and this association with IIFA is a great way to spread the message to the larger audiences.”
Commenting on the association, Sabbas Joseph, Co-Founder-Director, Wizcraft International Entertainment, said, “With India hosting the World Environment Day, 2018, IIFA’s partnership with UNEP cannot have come at a better time. At IIFA we have always followed sustainable environmental practices. With IIFA’s remarkable reach to a global audience, I am sure our message of ending the scourge of plastic will be heard far and wide.”