Plastic separation going well at Drax Hall Manor

THE plastic separation project in Drax Hall Manor, St Ann, is progressing well with more than 360 bags of plastic bottles collected since the start of the pilot in February 2020.

The community is the first in the parish to participate in the ongoing national plastic separation and recycling campaign being undertaken by the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), through its regional arm, North Eastern Parks and Markets (NEPM) Waste Management Limited.

Customer relations officer at NEPM, Donasha Biggs, told JIS News that six or more bags of bottles are removed from the community per week, where several drums have been set up for collection. The bins were officially commissioned into service recently.

The bags of containers are then taken to Recycling Partners of Jamaica, which has joined with the NSWMA on the national programme.

Biggs said residents have been receptive of the programme and are disposing of their plastic containers in the bins provided.

“We have done some public education work inside the community whereby all residents are made aware of our programme and they are encouraged to take the plastic bottle to a particular location, which is the green area of the community, and dispose of it in the drums that are set there,” she said.

Meanwhile, NEPM said it is looking to extend the programme throughout St Ann and other communities in the region, which also comprises St Mary and Portland.

Biggs said Boscobel Housing Scheme and Hills of Boscobel in St Mary are poised to take part in the plastic separation project.

“We will also be going into the community of Brook Green in Ocho Rios. They did a small pilot project some time ago and they did well. So of course, they are one of the communities that are confirmed to partner with us on this programme,” she stated.

Biggs has urged all residents in the region to take responsibility for the proper disposal of their household waste as well as to get into the habit of separating their plastic containers.

Manager of Recycling Partners of Jamaica Sophia Kerr said that the company will be installing a larger receptacle in Drax Hall to collect the increasing number of plastic bottles.

“We have three bins over there, but instead of using the bins we will install a new cage, which will hold a lot more. So what we ask them to do is put their plastics in garbage bags and take them to the cage,” she said.

“[Also], we want to place other cages at some of the gas stations here in St Ann so persons can start their separation. It is our responsibility. If we don’t recycle our plastic bottles, it is going to end up in our backyards,” she pointed out.

Kerr said the partnership between Recycling Partners of Jamaica and NSWMA will strengthen as more communities participate in the plastic separation and recycling campaign.

She stated that increased marketing and sensitisation will be done to get Jamaicans to adopt the practice.

In the meantime, resident of Drax Hall Manor, Clive Gordon, welcomes the plastic separation campaign, noting that it is good for the environment.

Gordon says he practised plastic separation for many years while living in England and now that he is back in Jamaica, he is pleased that a similar concept exists.

“I thought it was a very good idea. People have so much things to throw out and things that could be recycled like cardboard and plastic containers. So things can be done and I am very pleased to see what’s going on,” Gordon said.


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