In an effort to tackle the world’s waste problem 150 countries around the globe will unite on 15 September 2018 to celebrate the first ever World Cleanup Day.
The event, which is an initiative of the Let’s Do It campaign, will kick off in New Zealand when the sun rises and move around the globe with the time zones until it sets, ending in Hawaii 36 hours later.
The campaign is a call to action that will see decision makers and ordinary citizens alike taking real action to clean up their streets by picking up litter.
South Africa will be participating in the event which falls within the country’s annual Cleanup and Recycle SA week activities taking place from 10 – 15 September 2018.
For the past 22 years, Plastics SA has. This year it will take place from 10-15 September 2018, culminating in the first World Cleanup Day.
Douw Steyn, Sustainability Director of Plastics SA, which has been an active partner in the country’s clean involvement in events like the annual International Coastal Cleanup Day, says this is the biggest positive civic action the world has seen, and they are fortunate to be part of this global movement that hopes to inspire change in human behaviour.
Plastics a big polluter
Steyn acknowledges that packaging is one of the biggest culprits when it comes to pollution, however, as one of the first signatories of the Marine Debris Declaration Plastics SA actively supports projects aimed at contributing to sustainable solutions.
“We have managed to get other packaging streams and retailers to support our efforts and recycling initiatives. Last year alone, we donated 350 000 yellow refuse bags that were used for clean-ups around the country and assisted coordinators with audited clean-ups,” he says.
Ocean waste avalanche
According to Steyn approximately 80% of ocean litter is derived from land based waste and without effective waste collection, an avalanche of debris will enter the ocean.
To prevent this, the organisation is not only encouraging all South Africans to participate in this year’s Cleanup and Recycle SA week activities and World Cleanup Day, but also to be responsible in their daily activities by ensuring their recyclables are collected for recycling as we all continue to work towards a common goal: creating a cleaner world.