Plastic bottle separation drive in Falmouth
Representatives of the National Solid Waste Management Authority(NSWMA), Recycling Partners of Jamaica, Montego Bay MarinePark, and the Forestry Department share a photo opportunity duringa plastic bottle separation drive in the town of Falmouth, Trelawny,on Wednesday. (Photo: JIS

THE National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) and Recycling Partners of Jamaica held a plastic bottle separation drive in the town of Falmouth, Trelawny, on Wednesday.

The activity sought to raise awareness and interest surrounding the national plastic separation and recycling campaign, which is under way in several parishes, by highlighting the impact plastics have on the environment.

Individuals were educated about the importance of separating their plastic bottles and containers, as well as where to drop them off or make arrangements for pickup as the campaign steadily expands across the country.

Community relations officer at the NSWMA's regional arm, Western Parks and Markets (WPM) Waste Management Limited, Sharnon Williams, told JIS News that plastic collection has been increasing in the region, which, in addition to Trelawny, also includes Westmoreland, Hanover, and St James.

She indicated that there is a receptacle in Falmouth where bottles can be dropped off for pickup.

“Now persons have that option to separate their plastic bottles so we can remove them. We don't want them at the Retirement disposal site, because they are toxic and bad for the environment,” Williams pointed out.

“So, today, we are educating persons and telling them, 'Separate your plastic bottles. You can call Recycling Partners of Jamaica or WPM Waste Management Limited and we will collect them,' ” she added.

Vendor services administrator at Recycling Partners of Jamaica, Racquel Hoilett, said that the sensitisation initiative is important, as the more plastics collected the more good it does the environment.

“We only have one planet, and so the harm that the plastics do to our environment, the pollution it causes, the destruction to our marine life, all of that may seem like it doesn't affect us, but it actually does,” she pointed out.

“It affects our climate [and] the way that we live, so we have to protect the only planet that we have. There is no other option,” she stressed.

Logistics administrator of Recycling Partners of Jamaica, Jonathan-Adam Beckford, told JIS News that there is also a compensation system in place, where individuals are paid $50 per kilogram of plastics brought in to a depot.

“Recycling helps the environment. A lot of people aren't seeing the immediate effect it has on us and it is not until the bottles are piling up in the yards and on the roads that they start to act, but we don't want it to get there so we are putting things in place,” he said.

The Montego Bay Marine Park, Forestry Department and other agencies participated in the sensitisation drive.

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