City on a mission to recycle

2016-04-08 09:44
Msunduzi municipality wants to expand its kerbside recycling project to all areas.

Msunduzi municipality wants to expand its kerbside recycling project to all areas. (File)

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Pietermaritzburg - Msunduzi Municipality is going all out to encourage its residents to recycle household waste.

On Thursday they announced that they are expanding the kerbside recycling project to all residential areas under the ­municipality.

The initiative started as a pilot programme in 2009 in only three wards, then added another ward last year.

Richard Rajah, the city’s head of waste management, said the programme would now be rolled out to all 37 wards under the municipality.

The programme, which Rajah said had generated interest from Chase Valley, Montrose, Prestbury, Athlone, Wembley and Clarendon households, provides residents with hassle-free recycling at no cost.

Residents are asked to put all their recyclables in a clear bag which is collected by the recyclers.

“We are calling on bakkie owners, especially those with trailers, to join the project. We are going to train them and we will link them with bigger recyclers,” he said.

Rajah said the municipality would also embark on an educational programme to over 163 000 households, to teach people about the positive impact recycling has on the environment.

The municipality had said it hoped the educational programme would help curb illegal dump sites in townships.

If successful, the programme would mean there would be less need for a new landfill site immediately, with the New England Road landfill site said to have about five years left, the municipality said.

Rajah said the project would also reduce municipal costs as far as picking up waste is concerned.

“There will be less rounds, less roads that our cars are going to go to, less hours and less maintenance,” he said.

Dr Ray Ngcobo, who was speaking on behalf of the acting municipal manager, Boniwe Zulu, said the programme presented people of Msunduzi with an opportunity not to be missed.

“It is a huge industry. It is a R12 billion industry in South Africa. The opportunity we have created here for small waste collectors is also going to generate interest for them to get into a multi-billion rand industry.

“The amount of waste that you see being generated in Msunduzi, if we had to process all that waste, you are likely to create in a period of 36 months close to 7 000 jobs and we are talking labour intensive jobs. We are talking jobs where recyclers would have to collect and package. That is serious business,” he said.

• sabelo.nsele@witness.co.za

Read more on:    recycling  |  pietermaritzburg

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