Many young minds and volunteers are coming together to clean Bhutan and make it green. Clean Bhutan and Green Bhutan is an innovative initiative of the government and it is dedicated to celebrating the 60th Birth Anniversary of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyalpo Jigme Singye Wangchuck, recognized internationally as a champion of the environment.
Clean Bhutan takes on the responsibility of cleaning towns, rivers and trails and Green Bhutan aims to plant flowers and trees in and around the towns. The move is expected to counter a major factor contributing pressure on the environment such a lack of civic sense due to rapid modernization. Clean Bhutan members and volunteers are seen fighting the menace of littering and wastes dumping. They have been able
to stir mass educational awareness and sensitization on waste management.
So far, Clean Bhutan has registered members from various institutions, organization, and communities. Clean Bhutan has cleaned most of the prominent tourist trek and hike routes in Bhutan, as tourism is an important means of generating hard currency earnings.
The other important responsibility of Clean Bhutan is cleaning the major rivers in Bhutan such as Punatsangchhu, Mangdechhu and Dangmechhu, which are important for hydropower revenue generation in future. The members have cleaned rivers and streams to ensure swift flow of the river without contamination. Clean Bhutan is focusing on Thimchhu, an important river which helps to generate more than Nu 7.8 billion as revenue through hydropower.
Under the idea of zero waste
villages and towns of Bhutan, Clean Bhutan is also ensuring behavioral changes of all citizens to achieve ‘Zero Waste Bhutan’ by 2030. This sector is already being managed by municipalities. Further, the members, as Clean Bhutan inspectors, are involved with the Thomdres and work with the local governments, non-governmental organizations and other relevant agencies.
Since its launch, Clean Bhutan has been engaging with various stakeholders in imparting and advocating waste management and practicing zero waste.
Many institutions, communities, organizations have volunteered in cleaning responsibly.
For instance, a few travel agents, like Gangri Tours and Trek, Bhutan Kazi, Tergo Travels and Sakteng Tours & Treks have adopted prominent trails to ensure clean trekking. Tango Trail, Chhimmi Lhakhang Trail, Dechenphu
trail and Cheri trail have been adopted by fours travel agents since 7 March 2014.
Clean Bhutan is also collaborating with organizations dedicated to zero waste and environment friendly business agencies in taking forward the waste management plan and produce goods and ease waste.
In addition, the volunteers and members of Clean Bhutan are thoroughly engaged in cleaning the waste left behind after Tshechus, religious ceremonies, gatherings, etc.
Clean Bhutan is a registered a non-governmental organization that advocates behavioral changes to save Bhutan and achieve zero waste in Bhutan by 2030.
The Clean Bhutan states “Zero Waste for Bhutan will be to change the citizens’ opinion and act to minimize waste by practicing the 6Rs (Rethink, Reduce, Recycle, Reuse, Recover and Responsibility).”