Prime Minister Sitiveni Rabuka has called on Fijians to continue recycling and reusing as our economic life heavily depends on our environment.
Officiating at the Global Recycling Day 2023 with the theme “Plastic-free Pacific: a plea” in Nadi yesterday, Rabuka highlighted that around two billion tonnes of waste is discarded every year however he believes that 74 per cent of this waste can be reusable.
He also commended waste recyclers for their work and echoed his sentiments of achieving a global objective combating emissions and the destruction of the universe.
Pacific Recycling Foundation founder and chief executive Amitesh Deo said they are calling on all Fijians to refrain from touching or using any forms of plastic, and reflect how we are disposing plastic waste.
Deo said a lot of effort and thought process has gone into developing this idea and it is their way of saying to stop and reflect on how are dealing with plastic waste.
“We understand you cannot go completely plastic free but 18 March is a day dedicated to reflecting on our actions. Yes, we will need plastic but it is a day dedicated to thinking about how do you deal with it and dispose it.”
“We had pushbacks where people have said why only one day and it does not make any sense, however, our message is that March 18th is a day to reflect on how we are disposing plastic.”
“Attached to all these are real stories and voices of people from Fiji and the Pacific as to how plastic and improper waste management have impacted their livelihoods where some food resources are no longer available, some do not taste the way they did in the past while others have plastic components in it.”
Deo stated that village elders have recognised that the food chain supply has been impacted because of improper waste management.
“March 18th is also a day to reflect on the struggles and challenges in recycling and is urging Fijians to join the recycling movement and show solidarity towards recycling programs by wearing a PIN.”
2023 GRD celebrations in Fiji is an initiative of PRF and Waste Recyclers Fiji Limited in partnership with Tourism Fiji, Swire Shipping, Pacific Energy, and Fiji National University.