This 14-year-old teenager attended the Plastic Health Summit as a speaker from Indonesia. 


Aeshnina Azzahra Aqilani just returned to Indonesia after attending an invitation from the Plastic Soup Foundation in Amsterdam. The teenager familiarly called Nina went with her parents, Prigi Arisandi and Daru Setyo Rini, to attend the Plastic Health Summit as a speaker from Indonesia. 

While attending the event, Nina spoke about the waste trade, where developed countries smuggle their waste illegally to Indonesia. This can pollute the Indonesian environment.

"We just found the fact that the waste is dumped into developed countries. We cried hearing this fact," Nina said. This 14-year-old teenager also was allowed to see Plastic Recycling Center in Amsterdam. Nina told from all the waste collected there (Plastic Recycling Center), only 60 percent of the plastic waste. For other debris such as tin, aluminum, paper, textiles sent to the incinerator or burned. 



"They only process 80 percent of the waste, and they use water to wash the waste. When I asked where the water was disposed of, they said they recycle the water, but the waste from recycling is quite enormous. They need 50 percent of new plastic seeds to produce new products by using sophisticated machines," Nina said. 

Not only that, during three weeks in Amsterdam, Nina also visited Groningen, Leiden, and walked along the Amsterdam canals. She admits that the Dutch are trying very hard to use renewable sources of electricity such as windmills and solar panels.

"Three weeks in Amsterdam and one week in the UK are certainly a lot of new experiences and knowledge. Moreover, I met researchers who researched microplastics in the placenta, blood, fruit, and microplastics' impact on humans. I also invite Dutch citizens to reduce single-use plastics, " Nina said. 

Nina also gives a message for children in Indonesia to be encouraged to speak up for their rights. "Help us to live in a brighter future! Let's reduce single-use plastic!" She added. 

About Plastic Health Summit of 2021

On October 21, 2021, the second Plastic Health Summit was held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Hosted by the Plastic Soup Foundation, the event followed the first edition in 2019 (FPF reported) and featured 25 speakers from academia, policy, business, and civil society. All presentations highlighted different aspects of plastics and their impacts on health, and recordings are freely available to watch.

Other speakers addressed the ethical aspects of plastic pollution from failed recycling, where plastic waste from industrialized nations is shipped, sometimes illegally, to Indonesia, Ghana, and other countries in the Global South. Susan Shaw, Shaw Institute, highlighted child labor as a key factor with detrimental health consequences.

Daru Setyorini and Prigi Arisandi showed footage from their home Indonesia where imported plastic waste is not being recycled but burnt in non-industrial incineration, leading to air and soil contamination dioxins, and other hazardous, persistent chemicals.


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