Kenya Association of Manufacturers has thrown its weight behind the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENR) on plans to recycle plastic bottles instead of banning them.
In a statement, the manufacturers’ umbrella body backed the Environment PS Charles Sunkuli, statement that plastic bottle manufacturers will be encouraged to develop plans to recycle the bottles.
According to data from National Environment Management Authority (Nema), 50 million bottles are used in Kenya annually.
Nema board chairman, John Konchellah, had previously announced that the agency was drafting a gazette notice that would see plastic bottles ban effected by April 30.
KAM noted that the Government’s move to embrace a holistic waste management approach to managing PET plastic bottle waste is a much needed intervention.
“Working in partnership with MENR, we endeavor to establish long-lasting solutions towards the protection and nurturing of our environment in an effort to secure the future of our country.” The statement reads.
The challenges in the use and consumption of many products has always been, and continues to be waste management. The knowledge and prudent exercise on proper disposal needs to be coupled with the instruments and infrastructure to help recycle and re-use waste material.
A sustainable waste management solution looks at addressing behavior change and economic inequality which lie at the heart of our waste problem. This involves creating awareness for proper waste disposal right from the home to waste collection, transportation, segregation and recycling – thereby stimulating a thriving and valuable industry for the country.
“In our commitment for a cleaner Kenya, we are involving all stakeholders in the development of inclusive and sustainable solutions. It is for this reason that we formed a PET sub sector in 2017, which draws membership from private businesses and manufacturers involved in the PET value chain. Following the concept of Extended Producer Responsibility, the sector aims to work in partnership with the government and its agencies to develop sustainable solutions for the management of PET related waste. The sub sectors proposed 2018 activities will be driven by two main goals which include: To promote alternative uses of PET through recycling and upcycling and sensitising the citizens on the recycling value of PET.” KAM noted.
The manufacturers also said they had Extensive meetings with the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MENR) and the National Environment Waste Authority (NEMA) personnel including two high level meetings with the Cabinet Secretary (CS), Prof Judi Wakhungu on plans to implement these waste management initiatives. Consequently, they established an implementation team that includes representatives from the KAM PET Sub Sector, MENR, and NEMA to drive these activities – one of which was the first clean up drive at Uhuru Park executed in December last year. We are currently rolling out the 2018 plan which will focus on the counties.
Additionally, KAM currently hosts the Responsible Care® program in Kenya, which is a volunteer initiative by the Manufacturing Industry aimed at enhancing performance, discovering new business opportunities while improving employee safety, health of the surrounding communities and the general environment. It is geared at moving all Kenyans towards a safer, more sustainable future.
We are proud to be the first African Country to undertake the Responsible Care® initiative in the East African Region.