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Plastics SA hosts four clean-up projects

September 2019 is Clean-up and Recycle SA month – a time to unite and tackle litter and pollution in the environment. Plastics SA encourages all forms of pollution eradication, and as such, has already hosted four clean-up projects this year. We have installed a river catchment project, hosted Operation Clean Sweep, run educational demonstrations and led a fishing line bin installation project. Find more about these projects below:

River catchment project

Plastics SA recently teamed up with environmentalists in Durban to tackle ocean pollution. The team installed a litter boom where the Umbilo and Umhlatuzana Rivers meet before they enter the Durban Harbour, to catch any floating waste before it enters the Indian Ocean.

These booms are designed to trap litter that is washed down the rivers from upstream. The booms also allow for the trapped litter to be collected from a single point. These devices doe not pose a risk to any species found in the rivers. This river catchment project has helped to eradicate a large amount of litter that would certainly have found its way into the ocean environment. 

Litter collected in a river boom

Operation Clean Sweep

Operation Clean Sweep has been an ongoing project of Plastics SA since 2017. This initiative aims for zero plastic pellet, flake or powder loss at plastics manufacturing facilities in South Africa. By preventing particles of plastic from being washed into drains or blown away in the wind at the source, we can minimise the presence of the particles in the environment.

The Operation Clean Sweep pledge has been signed by a number of plastics manufacturers, producer responsibility organisations, recyclers, retailers and representative associations. Every segment of the plastics industry has a role to play in minimising plastic pellet loss, by implementing good housekeeping and pellet, flake, and powder containment practices.

Educational initiatives

Plastics SA partnered with AquaAmazing to host a stand at the Sasol Techno X Exhibition. Over 19 000 visitors attended this event in Sasolburg, including 4000 learners from 78 schools. We used the platform to highlight the value of plastics and educate attendees on the importance of recycling plastic waste. 

AquaAmazing performed nine shark dissections during the exhibition to reveal the threat of marine pollution to its creatures. As a result, Plastics SA and AquaAmazing received the award for the most talked-about exhibitor at the event.

Fishing line bin installations

Discarded and disused fishing line can pose a serious threat to marine life. It can cut into the skin of creatures and entangle any moving animal swimming past. This project aimed to raise public awareness of the negative impacts of discarded fishing line on sea creatures, as well as to encourage fishermen to dispose of their fishing line in a responsible manner.

Plastics SA teamed up with the Dyer IslandConservation Trust, the Wildlife and Environmental Society of Southern Africa (WESSA), MacNeil Plastics and the South African Plastics Pipe Makers Association (SAPPMA) to create a nationwide network of fishing line recycling bins. This fishing line bin project has already led to the installation of 386 bins at various beaches and ports around South Africa.

One of the main goals of the project is to install 500 bins across the country’s coastline and as far afield as Mozambique, where South African holidaymakers regularly go on deep-sea fishing excursions. To date, over 350 kilograms of discarded fishing line has been removed and recycled. Over 500 fishing hooks have also been retrieved from the bins.

These four projects are just a few that have been organised or supported by Plastics SA. During the month of September 2019, we will also be getting involved in a number of clean-up projects, including Clean-up and Recycle SA Week (16 to 21 September), National Recycling Day SA (20 September), International Coastal Clean-up Day (21 September) and ‘Let’s Do It’ World Clean-up (21 September). Come join us and help to clean our environment from litter and pollution.

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Plastics SA represents all sectors of the South African plastics industry. ​Together with our associations, we play an active role in the growth and development of the industry and strive to address plastics related issues, influence role-players and make plastics the material of choice.

​Plastics SA has been mandated to ensure a vibrant and sustainable plastics industry in South Africa. The plastics sector is uniquely placed to meet the needs of a sustainable society and to deliver solutions to many challenges such as recycling, climate change, water scarcity, resource usage and energy recovery.

For more news, updates and information on the South African plastics industry, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.

September is Clean-up and Recycle SA month. Diarise these dates!

September is all about cleaning up our environment and recycling plastic waste in South Africa. In fact, September has been dedicated to clean-up and recycling campaigns by the plastics industry. There are a number of initiatives taking place this month that are centred around pollution eradication, litter clean-ups and recycling drives.

Here are some of the dates that you can mark down in your calendar. All South Africans are welcome to take part in these campaigns and do their bit to help rid our environment of litter and pollution.

  • 16 – 21 September 2019: Clean-up and Recycle SA Week
  • 20 September 2019: National Recycling Day SA
  • 21 September 2019: International Coastal Clean-up Day
  • 21 September 2019: ‘Let’s Do It’ World Clean-up

Note these dates in September 2019

Clean-up and Recycle SA Week is an annual event that is organised by Plastics SA. It is intended to encourage the public (adults and school children) to clean-up the environment by picking up litter on their daily commutes. By cleaning schools, workplaces and the streets of South African towns, we can help to protect the environment from pollution and boost recycling rates at the same time.

While the entire week has been dedicated to waste control, there are two important days at the end of the week. Friday is National Recycling Day SA – a day to raise awareness about the importance of recycling plastic waste instead of throwing it in the general waste bin. Then, Saturday marks International Coastal Clean-up Day – a time to get involved in community beach clean-ups and remove all waste items from marine environments.

For those South Africans that cannot participate in coastal clean-ups, they can make an impact on the Saturday by participating in the ‘Let’s Do It’ World Clean-up. This initiative encourages citizens living inland (not near the coast) to participate in community clean-ups and remove litter from parks, roads, city centres and public spaces.

This month is an opportunity for all South Africans to participate in these initiatives and remove litter from our environment. It also presents an opportunity to bolster our recycling sector and give our waste a second lifecycle. September is a month dedicated to a healthy environment that is free from all forms of waste and pollution, so join the cause and take part in community campaigns in your town.

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Plastics SA represents all sectors of the South African plastics industry. ​Together with our associations, we play an active role in the growth and development of the industry and strive to address plastics related issues, influence role-players and make plastics the material of choice.

​Plastics SA has been mandated to ensure a vibrant and sustainable plastics industry in South Africa. The plastics sector is uniquely placed to meet the needs of a sustainable society and to deliver solutions to many challenges such as recycling, climate change, water scarcity, resource usage and energy recovery.

For more news, updates and information on the South African plastics industry, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Pinterest.