Industry body Plastics South Africa (SA) has partnered with Estonian clean-up civic movement Let’s Do It! Africa for the World Cleanup Day on September 15.
Plastics SA will provide resources and coordinate the activities as part of the Cleanup and Recycle SA week, from September 10 to 15. Last year, it donated 350 000 plastic refuse bags and assisted coordinators with audited clean-ups.
“For the past 22 years, Plastics SA has partnered with Ocean Conservancy by coordinating South Africa’s involvement in the yearly International Coastal Cleanup Day, during which thousands of volunteers each year collect and remove litter from waterways as part of Cleanup and Recycle SA week.
“This is the biggest positive civic action the world has seen, and we are fortunate to be part of this global movement that hopes to inspire change in human behaviour,” says Plastics SA sustainability director Douw Steyn.
The organisation is encouraging people of all ages to be responsible in their daily activities by ensuring their recyclables are collected for recycling.
“Packaging waste continues to be one of the biggest culprits when it comes to the pollution of our water sources and marine environment. About 80% of ocean litter is derived from land-based waste. Without effective waste collection, an avalanche of debris will enter the ocean.
“As one of the first signatories to the Marine Debris Declaration, where 74 plastics associations worldwide have committed themselves to fight marine litter in 2011, Plastics SA actively supports projects in six key areas aimed at contributing to sustainable solutions – education, research, public policy, sharing best practices, plastics recycling/recovery and plastic pellet containment,” he says.
More than 150 countries will be mobilised to pick up litter. World Cleanup Day will start in New Zealand when the sun rises and move around the globe with the time zones until it sets, ending in Hawaii, US, 36 hours later.