​22 May 18 - The Thant Myanmar group will launch a campaign next month to raise awareness about the environmental damage caused by disposable plastic water bottles by inaugurating water refilling stations nationwide.

Myanmar's tradition of storing drinking water in clay pots is threatened by the widespread use of plastic water bottles. The Thant Myanmar group is keeping the old tradition alive by building water refilling stations nationwide to reduce the number of plastic bottles, which are detrimental to the environment, according to the group.

Thant Myanmar has partnered with Cambodia-based initiative Refill Not Landfill-Asia and works with partners to bring the water refilling stations to Myanmar.

People will be able to refill reusable water bottles for free at more than 100 refilling stations across Myanmar. Their location will be available on Google Maps.

The stations will be launched on World Environment Day, June 5.

"We don't want people using disposable one-litre plastic bottles. We want people to get in the habit of reusing bottles when they need water," said the spokesperson of Thant Myanmar, on Sunday.

Water refill station will be available in houses, stores and restaurants. Yoma Bank and Nourish Café are planning to install stations.

"The refill stations will mostly use 20-litre bottles. The design will be different depending on the supporting partner," said the spokesperson of Thant Myanmar.

Thant Myanmar was established in early 2018. The group is based all around the country and headquartered in Yangon, with offices in Mandalay and Nay Pyi Taw.

The grassroots organisation aims to reduce plastic pollution in Myanmar by highlighting, supporting and initiating efforts and commitments toward this goal.

"We want to get us all thinking about the amount of plastic we use, how we use it, which items we can refuse or replace with non-plastic options and thus, ultimately, move towards a cleaner Myanmar," the group stated.

Thant Myanmar is entirely run by volunteers and has been operating on the basis of initial seed funding of about US$500 – which is their only budget so far. However, some of their initiatives have been funded by partners such as the EU, The United Nations Environment Program and the French Embassy, according to Thant Myanmar.

Their vision is that by 2025, less plastic will be used and more reused and recycled through strong commitment and engagement among individuals, companies, civil society and the government in Myanmar, said the group.


​Source: Myanmar Times