Recycling opportunities islandwide
THE EDITOR, Sir:
The concerns expressed by Mario Maffissante and Dr John McDowell in an article in The Sunday Gleaner on November 30, as well as those further detailed in The Gleaner editorial on Tuesday, December 2, are ours as well. We represent Recycling Partners of Jamaica Limited (RPJL), an entity established in March 2014 to increase recycling activities in Jamaica. The initial focus is on recycling polyethylene terephthalate or PET, which is largely used in the beverage industry and with other consumer products.
RPJL is established as a joint venture between the Government of Jamaica and the private sector, with an initial annual budget of approximately $80 million to fund its operation and capital expenditure. This funding will be used to build depots across Jamaica to enable Jamaicans to pull bottles and, eventually, other recyclables from the waste stream. In addition to its environmental benefits, RPJL is also targeting the employment of approximately 3,000 persons over three years, who will be directly and indirectly engaged in the collection, transportation and mechanical processing of the recyclables. Opportunities have also opened up for communities, NGOs and others to engage in recycling by becoming a part of the RPJL network.
RPJL is happy to announce that the first of its recycling depots will be opened in Trinity, Port Maria, this week, with at least two other depots targeted to be opened before the year ends. These depots will complement other locations such as those supported by the Jamaica Environment Trust and UWI, at which the general public and students can deposit PET bottles which we now collect.
It is our hope that the frustration expressed with the current lack of a system to recycle PET and other waste will be eased by increasing opportunities to support our activities as we roll out a system which allows all Jamaicans and visitors to participate in keeping our island clean and beautiful.
Ann Marie Rodriques