Plastic Free Ilam

Green Ilam: Plastic free Municipality

Context Ilam Municipality is a beautiful city situated in eastern district of Nepal. A year ago, Ilam Municipality was announced as a plastic free district with the slogan “Our Motto: Clean, Prosperous Ilam”. Joint efforts by various organizations including Society of Environment Alerted Manpower (SEAM) Ilam and by the local people to develop the Ilam as the Green city of Nepal led to this milestone declaration. Plastic bags litter the landscape. Once they are used, most plastic bags go into landfill, or rubbish tips. Each year more plastic bags are ending up in the landfill. Once they are thrown out, plastic bags find their way into our waterways, parks, beaches, and streets. And, if they are burned, they pollute the air with toxic fumes. The manufacture of plastic bags adds to carbon emissions into the air as well. Animals also die every year because of plastic bags—many animals ingest plastic bags, mistaking them for food, and therefore die. And worse, the ingested plastic bag remains intact even after the death and decomposition of the animal. Thus, it lies around in the landscape where another victim may ingest it. One of the worst environmental effects of plastic bags is that they are non-biodegradable. The decomposition of plastic bags takes about 1000 years. Society of Environment Alerted Manpower (SEAM), Ilam is determined to continue that very program launched by the Municipality and the local people to develop and change Ilam as a Green City and set an example as “Plastic Free Municipality”. We aim and hope to reduce the use of plastic bags permanently from Ilam and instead encourage the use of renewable and recyclable, reusable carrying bags as an alternative to the plastic bag for daily household activities and other purposes. Those bags will be produced by the Single Women Group (SWG) of Ilam. The status of single women in the country is very depressing because they are shunned by our society. Hence this project also aims to empower single women in Ilam by providing them with income generating skills on bio-degradable bags production and manufacturing. This initiative will be a landmark against environmental degradation and empowerment of Single Women in Ilam. Rationale SEAM is planning to strengthen, preserve the green environment itself and also lay a foundation for healthy and clean atmosphere for all city dwellers, from infants to aged people, keeping their and entire society’s well being. With a joint effort from socially unrecognized groups like Single Women Group (SWG) of Ilam and SEAM itself, the project endeavors to strengthen and formulate the ban against plastic bags within Ilam. Single Women Group (SWG) of Ilam will be supporting this initiative by producing handmade degradable and environment friendly bags. Hence, this project will also uplift the status of Single Women Group (SWG) as it provides them with an opportunity to engage them in income generating activity and also contribute for the better and green environment. Therefore, the project proposal is prepared to make plastic free municipality by mobilizing the Single Women Group (SWG) in producing degradable & environment friendly bags. Implementation Modality The project will be implemented through the initiation of SEAM Ilam and our collaboration with the local Single Women Group (SWG) of Ilam Municipality. We will be working to enhance the capacity of SWG by developing their income generating skills and also, for the promotion and advocacy of degradable and environment friendly bags. Firstly, the SWG will be trained to produce degradable and environment friendly bags. The trained single women will be provided with some incentives for the production and sales. SEAM Ilam will coordinate withIlamMunicipality, Local non-governmental organizations and other stakeholders for this. SEAM Ilam will be responsible for the reporting to the partner organization on a semi-annual basis.  Objectives

  1. To capacitate Single Women Group (SWG) of Ilam by training them with income generating skills.
  2.  To sustain the concept of “Green City Ilam”.


  1. SEAM Ilam will conduct skill based training for single women on the production of degradable, environment friendly bags.
  2. Campaigning in various schools, colleges, and hoarding boards and on- the-spot activities will be done on the usefulness, benefits, impact of degradable and environment friendly bags.
  3. Meetings with the local associations of Hotels, Small Industries, Cottage Industries to encourage and advocate for the use of Environment friendly bags.
  4. Production of Degradable and Environment friendly bags.

Instead of using plastic bags to carry various belongings, we encourage people to use degradable bags made of jute, paper and clothe. While doing so, we will employ the single women in manufacturing such bags to increase their market availability in a subsidized rate which will provide an economic incentive in addition to environmental incentive to prevent the use of plastic bags.Expected outcomes After the completion of project (after 6 months), the project will achieve:

  1. Re-integration and socialization of single women owing to their independent economic stature.
  2. Renovation ofIlamMunicipalityas aGreenCity.
  3. Motivation amongst stakeholders for further collaborative developmental actions and initiatives as such.

Sustainability Linkages and networking built up may help this project to uphold and sustain. The SWG will begin to produce and market the degradable and environment friendly bags after the completion of the project. We will provide them with a certain amount of seed money through which they can produce, market and sell bags on their own. Those products sold in the market will ultimately account for the sustainability of the project for long time as it will help Ilam Municipality to be plastic free city. Demonstrating the environment friendly bags




Amount (Rs.)

1 Training & Equipment 60,000
2 Raw materials 23,000
3 Training and Manufacturing hall 12,000
4 Seed money 50,000
5 Awareness campaign 36,000
6 Management support 5000
  Total 1,86,000

In words one lakhs eighty six thousand only .   Contact: Society of Environment Alerted Manpower (SEAM) Ilam-6, Dhobidhara

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