Commitment to save the environment

Efficient and proper waste management is necessary to complement development. Increasing amounts of waste, resulting from growing consumption and urbanisation, have frequently led to pollution of lagoons and oceans and contamination of ground water. There is a need to adopt clean technologies for safe waste management. Picture show a paper re-cycling plant in Suva. Picture: SUPPLIED

A TRIP on a cruise liner to Fiji 25 years ago turned into a commitment of saving the environment through recycling of waste materials.

Peter Bray, managing director of Waste Recyclers PTE Fiji Ltd fell in love with the environment and surrounding of Fiji when he visited in 2004.

“What started as a simple venture into something new turned out to be a passion and worthy cause,” he said. “I came to Fiji on a cruise ship and fell in love with the place.

“I looked into different options of investment and one of my friends suggested I should look into recycling and so the journey began.

“And 25 years ago we ventured alone into recycling in Fiji. Today, we are reaching out for support.

“Our team is currently working on several plans for implementation in 2019-2020.”

This week, the company celebrates 25 years of existence in Fiji its silver jubilee.

“The first item that the company began to collect was waste paper and 25 years later, Waste Recyclers Fiji PTE Ltd collects a wide range of recyclables including cardboard, plastic bottles, glass bottles, plastic, tin cans, aluminum cans, batteries, steel and many more,” Mr Bray said.

He has never regretted establishing the recycling company which has not only benefited locals through earning an income but increased awareness about the importance of saving the environment.

Company consultant Amitesh Deo said the focus of their work was recycling.

“The main focus of our work is recycling and over the past 25 years we have been committed to ensuring that recyclables do not end up in our landfills or are illegally disposed,” he said.

“Our work in Fiji as the only company which collects several different recyclable items normally goes unrecognised.

“It has been a real challenge to get some important stakeholders to be interested in recycling.”

The 25 years of operation has not been an easy road for the company.

Mr Deo said they had continued to face challenges with other organisations that have pretended to do such work but failed to fulfil the purpose of recycling.

“Another huge challenge faced in Fiji these days is that some ‘waste collecting companies’ making false promises to business houses and, in particular, resorts and hotels that they actually sort recyclables out of ‘rubbish’,” he said.

“The truth of the matter is that most recyclables end up in landfills or are disposed illegally in someone else’s back yard.

“We welcome support from and dialogue with concerned authorities and business houses to assist us in ensuring recyclables do not end up in landfills or are illegally disposed.”

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