26 February 2018


Plastic bottles are not trash. Here’s why …

Guest blog by PETCO Associate Member: Gregory Player, Director of Clean C – Cape Town Beach Cleanup.

Plastic. Love it. Freaking hate it. Plastic is fantastic. Plastic pollutes. Ban it. Rethink it. Redesign it. Use it. Refuse it.

One thing is for sure though: We will never get away from plastic. The keyboard I type this on is proof of that.

Bottles. Glass. Plastic. Pretty much the only 2 options you have really (and metal). Glass is cool. It breaks. It’s heavy (think about the extra carbon emissions when transporting). It’s recyclable. It will cut your kids foot if they stand on it at the beach. Plastic. It doesn’t break. It’s light. It transports easily. It floats. It pollutes our rivers and oceans. It is easily visible on afore-mentioned rivers and on our beaches. Perfectly recyclable.

Are. What are our options? Is it plastic that pollutes? Is it people that pollute? Is it industry that makes the stuff? Is it us that buy the stuff? Is it the wind that blows the stuff onto our shores? Is it illegal dumping in communities that “cause the stuff” to land up in our waterways?

Not. An easy discussion to have. 100s of different and varying opinions. Ban it. Reuse it. Recycle it. Make sure the manufacturing is done correctly so it can be recycled. Collect it. Sort it.

Trash. Maybe. Maybe not. Maybe it is a job creating, value adding, educational driving, thinking stimulating product that can be used and used again. In shirts. Quilts. Roads. Stuffed with things to become bricks. It creates tens of 1000s of jobs locally and internationally. People feed their families with it and from it.
One thing is for sure – we all have a responsibility to take.

Clean C – author of this article – runs a curbside recycling program in Blouberg/Table View/Milnerton/ Edgemead, to name a few areas. With bags and equipment generously sponsored by Petco – this program has grown from strength to strength, and in 2018 we want to keep that momentum going.

Educating communities on the VALUE that Plastic (and other materials) have if you recycle it and keep the VALUE of the product in the value chain.

9 Jobs created. Over 30 000 (PETCO) bags collected.

We think it’s safe to repeat the first word of the first five paragraphs and end it there.

Want to debate…pull into a beach cleanup that Clean C runs on the first Saturday of the month. Grab your *gasps* plastic bag and go fill it and let’s chat.

___ END ___

Contributed by: Gregory Player
Director: Clean C – Cape Town Beach Cleanup