Miss Earth South Africa has partnered with Interwaste, Waste & Recycling Management Company and MetPac-SA the producer responsibility organisation, who are responsible for the post-consumer metal packaging in SA; for the 2024 Global Recycling Day, focussing on our daily habits of recycling.

A matter that carries huge significance and can no longer be ignored. It is critical that waste and recycling are re-examined and that each individual looks at how they contribute to the waste stream and how they can be part of the solution in reducing pollution. Our planet Earth has become littered by waste products as a result of improper social behaviour. Waste has covered our land, filled our air and has had a significant impact on our oceans. Governments, corporates and industry must be held to account. “There is no such thing as ‘away’. When we throw anything away, it must go somewhere.” This statement needs to be understood in a recycling context, ‘away’ must be a specific place that our waste goes to.

“The Miss Earth South Africa organisation, through their #WasteStopsWithME campaign; hold the individual accountable. We believe in, promote and work towards a common goal of sustainability and conscious living,” says Ella Bella Leite, the Director of Miss Earth South Africa. “We are a programme that educates and empowers young women, while working with learners across the education system, so that they can take on the challenges that we face as a society. We are honoured to be able to work with like-minded corporates that support our community work and upliftment programmes, like Southern Sun, Skin Renewal, Lanza SA and Newsclip Media Monitoring. Our sponsors enable us to do the work we love.”

The partners for Global Recycling Day are key to the work done in schools and communities. Interwaste believe in an ethos of ‘Serving Land and Life’, realizing that it is the life we are creating, that needs protecting. This is a company that provides integrated waste and environmental solutions for individuals and corporates so as to help them, to be a part of the solution. They believe that the key to recycling is to know your waste, how to sort it and what process is required to recycle it. The Interwaste team strives towards the principle of zero waste to landfill.

Our sponsor, MetPac-SA, represents the metal packaging value chain in SA and reports directly to the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and Environment, on matters relating to post-consumer metal packaging recovery and recycling. The main objective is to ensure that the metal packaging industry, demonstrates perfect synchronisation regarding waste management plans, circular economy, environmental sustainability, promoting a goal of zero waste in the environment.

Recycling provides many benefits to our environment as it creates a healthier planet for all our people and for future generations. Recycling reduces the need to extract resources such as timber, water, minerals and other products, it conserves natural resources and allows materials to be used over and over again.

Since 1993, there has been an increase in used beverage can collection, from 18% to 72%. Aluminium cans are one of the top most recyclable materials. They are 100% recyclable and can be processed multiple times. Recycling secondary aluminium uses less than 20% of the energy needed for extraction of new aluminium, making it a highly sought after packaging material.  

In closing Leite stated, “Our programme for this year, is impactful and tangible. We believe that our learners at schools are ready for the challenge to increase their recycling habits. We have taken the problem to them, and explained how they can make a difference. Let’s get recycling and ensure that #WasteStopsWithME!!”

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