Kingston, Jamaica; Environmental stakeholders from the public and private sectors lent their support and expertise towards the launch of The Rae Town Plastic Recycling Pilot Project on Tuesday, October 29, 2019 at the Courtyard by Marriott.
The initiative seeks to reduce the levels of plastic in the wastestream entering the Kingston Harbour and provide income-generating opportunities around plastic recycling for community members.
The two-year pilot project is funded by the Japanese Government through the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) at a cost of USD$291,000.00 and will be implemented by the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA). The initiative forms part of Component Four of the wider Plastic Waste Minimization Project, launched in February 2018 by the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA).
Speaking at the launch, Executive Director of the NSWMA, Mr. Audley Gordon, highlighted the commitment of the Authority to providing the necessary resources for the implementation of the project. “We have been a part of this project from the beginning, as we really want to change behavior around waste and recycling. The idea is to pilot this project for the next two years in Rae Town, glean some lessons and best-case studies and then replicate it in other communities islandwide.”
Mr. Ainsworth Carroll, Director of Planning, Projects Monitoring, Evaluation and Research Division at the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA), reiterated the significance of the project in achieving the sustainable development goals focused on environment management. “This pilot project and by extension the Plastic Waste Minimization Project supports the implementation of the ban on single-use plastics, which was implemented to reduce the levels of plastic in the natural and built environment. We encourage the citizens of Rae Town and all Jamaicans to contribute to a healthy environment.”
Background – Plastic Minimization Project
Marine litter within the Jamaican coastal waters has significantly impacted the tourism product and the fisheries industry in particular. The research shows that if this trend is not halted, preferably reversed, the industries and the population at large will be jeopardized. The issue of marine litter from land-based sources (plastics and polystyrene foam) has become an urgent priority for the Government of Jamaica. The objective of the Plastic Waste Minimization project is to enhance the capacity of the country to carry out integrated waste management activities and strengthen the policy and legislative framework of Jamaica to reduce and manage plastic marine litter from land- based activities in an integrated and environmentally sound manner.
Public Education and Corporate Communication Branch (PECCB)
National Environment and Planning Agency
Tel: 876-754-7540, ext. 2430; Fax: 876-754-7596; Cell: 876-564-9397
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Public Relations Specialist
National Solid Waste Management Authority