Punk Against Plastic: Local Band Backs A Plastic-Free Bali

Punk Against Plastic: Local Band Backs A Plastic-Free Bali

“Don’t throw your rubbish everywhere,” is the literal translation of Balinese indie rock band Marco’s 2017 release, De Ngutang Lulu Ngawag Ngawag.

Filmed atop a garbage mound the size of several football pitches—Serangan’s Suwung dump—De Ngutung Lulu Ngawag Ngawag opens with the captions, “Ini bukan tebing atau gunung,” (this is not a cliff or a mountain), “ini lautan sampah,” (it’s a sea of rubbish).

“During rainy season, Bali is very prone to flooding. And these floods are often caused by littering. If left for a long time, this garbage that we might consider trivial can cause a lot of trouble. We wrote De Ngutang Lulu Ngawag Ngawag as a reminder to the public that trash is now a big problem. The message of the song is simple: If we don’t start acting, who else will take care of our Earth?”

Indeed, local musicians are sometimes the loudest activists here in Bali. Think back to Gede Robi Supriyanto, the self proclaimed ‘rebel with a cause’ who doubled up as frontman for psychedelic-grunge band Navicula. Back in 2016, he led the ‘Tolak Reklamasi,’ anti-reclamation campaign with a group called ForBali.

In light of Governor Rai Mantra’s decision to ban plastic bags in shops come 2019, members of punk rock outfit Marco spoke up again. “Of course, Bali’s trash issue is very worrying; plastic waste takes 200 years to break down… Hopefully the plastic bag ban can reduce the island’s waste and minimize environmental damage,” said Komar to Coconuts Bali.

Guitarist Adi Kusuma also expressed his optimism towards A Plastic-Free Bali, commenting to Kumparan yesterday, “This is good; at least the Denpasar city government is starting to act real…I hope this regulation will apply to all of Bali and does not stop here. The habit of littering also needs special attention.”

Despite the fact that the ban doesn’t extend outside of the Denpasar regency, and is only applicable for ‘modern’ shops and supermarkets, the news has been greeted as a huge step in the right direction.

Source&image: Coconuts Bali

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