Global Recycling Day is celebrated globally on 18th March annually. The event aims to raise awareness of the importance of recycling and encourage people to take action to reduce waste and protect the environment. The day brings together individuals, organisations, and governments worldwide to promote sustainable practices and highlight the benefits of recycling.
Global Recycling Day was first established in 2018 by the Global Recycling Foundation, a non-profit organisation that aims to promote the importance of recycling and support sustainable development. The day is recognised by the United Nations and celebrated worldwide.
Why do we need to recycle?
- Recycling conserves resources- When we recycle, materials are converted into new products, reducing the need to consume natural resources, which will help to protect natural habitats for the future.
- Reduction of landfill- Recyclable materials are reprocessed into new products when we recycle. As a result, the amount of rubbish sent to landfill sites decreases, reducing methane emissions, a potent greenhouse gas.
- Protection of the environment- Recycling reduces the need for extracting, refining and processing raw materials, which create air and water pollution. As recycling saves energy, it also reduces greenhouse gas emissions, which helps to tackle climate change.
- Recycling saves energy- Using recycled materials in manufacturing uses considerably less energy than required for producing new products from raw materials.
At Ocean Sole, we celebrated the day by cleaning the Oloolua Forest in Ngong. I’m sure you all know the importance of forests to our ecosystem. They purify the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, prevent erosion, and act as an essential buffer against climate change. Forests offer a home to much of the world's diverse plants and animals and provide essential natural resources from timber and food to medicinal plants.
Waste thrown at Oloolua Forest.
Recycling Nairobi and Clean Up Kenya are environmental organisations that joined us for the clean. We were honored to have Chris, the Chairperson of The Forest Association and two forest scouts join as well.
We brought with us gloves, trash bags, and of course, water since it was scorching that day! The cleaning began at 9.30 am. The sheer amount of trash thrown in the forest was horrifying to see. Some of the trash included:
We met Jada, a young eco-warrior in Kenya who excellently advocates for the environment and climate change and works with the Clean up Kenya organisation. Jada and her mum live on the coast of Kenya, and it warmed our hearts that they travelled to Nairobi to come and help us with the cleaning.
Meet Jada, a young eco-warrior.
Children from the community also came to help us. It was incredibly moving to see young kids wanting to be involved in conservation and taking care of the environment where they live.
Kids from the community
At the end, we educated everyone about the importance of waste management and how they can recycle waste. Chris informed us that in a few months, the Oloolua forest would be fenced, which will go a long way in helping to curb waste being thrown into the forest. It was a great day, and we’re thrilled to have been part of the process. We gave everyone some refreshments and thanked them for their excellent job. We returned the trash to the Karen Village and sorted it for recycling.
You can also be part of the change as an individual or a group. Here are a few ways to get involved this Global Recycling Day:
- Learn about recycling: Take some time to learn about the recycling process, what can and cannot be recycled, and how recycling helps reduce waste and conserve resources.
- Take action: Start by making small changes in your daily routine, such as using reusable bags and water bottles, reducing food waste, and properly disposing of hazardous materials.
- You can also participate in local recycling programs and volunteer for community clean-up events.
- Spread the word: Use social media to share information about recycling and promote the importance of sustainable practices. Encourage your friends and family to get involved and make a difference.
- Attend local events: Check your local events calendar for Global Recycling Day activities and events, such as recycling drives, workshops, and community clean-up efforts. You can also organise your community's event or activity to promote recycling.
Remember, it may not be your waste, but it is our planet, and we all must improve it.
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