Authorities in the northern Vietnamese province of Quang Ninh, home to Ha Long Bay, will start prohibiting all tourism establishments at the famed attraction and UNESCO World Heritage from using single-use plastics next month.
Tourism service providers will have to replace plastics with glass, paper, and other environmentally friendly choices starting September 1, according to Pham Dinh Huynh, a representative of Ha Long Bay management.
The management is expected to set up supervision teams to ensure the ban will be effectively enforced.
Tourists to the world-renowned bay will also be encouraged to limit the use of plastic bags and bottles.
Businesses and merchants who do not follow the new regulation will receive warnings or administrative fines in more severe cases.
The initiative is hoped to help keep the tourist site clean and maintain the beauty of the scenery in Ha Long.
Tourists have shown support to the single-use plastic ban.
Nguyen Hoa Binh, a visitor from the northern city of Hai Phong, told the Vietnam News Agency he had thrown away all the plastic bottles he carried with him to Ha Long right after he heard the information as a way to show his support.
The change can already be seen across the tourism area, as many street food vendors and service providers had already purchased paper cups and straws, and degradable bags in lieu of single-use plastic items.
The Ha Long Bay management currently works with two trash-collecting units, while nearly 30 local fishing ships also help collect tons of trash, most of which are plastic waste, in the waters on a daily basis.