Recyclers challenged to monetize plastic waste

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Recyclers challenged to monetize plastic waste
Recyclers challenged to monetize plastic waste

Africa-Press – Lesotho. As there are mounting concerns over the plastic pollution globally, the Head of Experimentation at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Accelerator Lab Teboho Khoali has challenged the recyclers to

turn plastic waste into profit. This was during the launch of Plastic Expo in Maseru on Wednesday. “We are here to test the Maseru market,” he said. He said they went on a nationwide

tour on the plastic recycling awareness campaign. Khoali said their focus is not only limited to plastics but also bottles and other recyclable materials.

Samuel Zwakala from the Environment Officer at the Ministry of Tourism, Environment and Culture (MTEC) said plastic is a leading environmental polluter.

He said all stakeholders are in the fight against this “monster” (the plastic) which he said pollutes the environment. Zwakala says the government has embarked on the

journey to draw robust policies to protect the environment and those who are committed to protecting it. He expressed confidence that students are being

taught recycling in their schools. He further thanked the plastic recyclers for protecting the environment and urged them to spread awareness on plastic

education. “We live well in a protected and safe environment in Lesotho,” he noted. The UNDP in collaboration with the MTEC are implementing a project on

“strengthening partnership on sustainable plastic life-cycle management in Lesotho”. “The

implementation of this project has been realized through working with a broad range of partners to agree on a menu of possible solutions including refusing

and reducing of single use plastic in retail, commercial and corporate spaces and enabling the re-use, repurposing and recycling of plastic waste,” the UNDP

had said in a statement. One of the UNDP beneficiaries who is also the exhibitor, Morakane Semoko, pleaded for the support of the public. Semoko had received funding, communication and

marketing products from the UNDP to make bricks with sand and plastic, 30 percent plastic and 70 percent sand. She has done Environment Management at the University of Free State and says she

decided to venture into the recycling business. Semoko said the market response has been “positive”. She said she has employed seven people who assist her in

the business. The Nubulart Recycling says in five years to come they want to recycle all the plastic in Lesotho and do not want to see the landfill at Ha-Tšosane.

The two-day expo has attracted exhibitors who use plastics, bottles, and tyres. Exhibited items included bricks, hats, bags, mats, jewelry boxes, stools, lampstands and

decorating items. Among the entertaining activities, ‘Mantša Mohale (Khomo ea Koti), Mosito Sentšo and Juvy oa Lepimpara wowed the exhibitors and attendants with the plastic

recycling themed song. The plastic recycling and reuse is tied to the Sustainable Development Goal No. 12 which is about responsible consumption and production. The MTEC in concert with the UNDP had initiated the plastic free Wednesday.

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