Thursday, October 11, 2012

Vietnam’s ancient city of Hoi An goes car free

BANGKOK: Vietnam’s ancient city of Hoi An in Quang Nam province has launched its first Car Free Day campaign on Sunday to coincide with its annual Nature Day.

The UNESCO’S world heritage site was the first city in Vietnam to run the campaign aimed at creating a healthier environment, Vietnam news agency VNA reported.

Campaign participants rode on bicycles and pedicabs around the city’s old quarter to raise awareness of environmental protection among locals and tourists.

“The campaign shows how committed the locals are to environmental protection. The city has successfully organised a pedestrian street in the old quarter since 2002 and has hosted the Nature Day in the last three years,” said Hoi An city’s People’s Committee deputy chairman, Nguyen Van Dung.

“We are honoured to be the first city in the country to join the Asian network of Car Free Day programmes. We hope the campaign will encourage people to use more environmentally friendly vehicles like bicycles and battery-powered bicycles and to walk more.”

The Car Free Day campaign started in La Rosshelle, France in 1997 and has attracted the participation of 2,268 cities in 40 countries.

Hoi An city has set up 13 sites for people to exchange used nylon bags for new reusable bags.

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