Samoa has taken the lead in the Pacific region in piloting the first recycling and waste management association.
This follows the launch of the Samoa Recycling and Waste Management Association (S.R.W.M.A.) by the association’s Patron and Prime Minister, Tuilaepa Sa’ilele Malielegaoi, at the Taumeasina Island Resort yesterday.
Present at the launch were members of the diplomatic corps, business stakeholders and some members of Cabinet.
S.R.W.M.A. aims to promote appropriate waste recycling and management practices by involving waste recyclers and management advocates in Samoa.
“The Government of Samoa has been leading for years in promoting a cleaner Samoa with several initiatives through the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (M.N.R.E.).
For instance, “The free rubbish collection services, which have covered all the islands of Samoa, including the construction of proper waste disposal facilities at Tafaigata and Vaiaata for solid and sewage and sludge,” Tuilaepa said.
“There is also a beautification of villages campaign that the Government supports, which was previously under the National Beautification Committee of the Tourism Authority in the past, but recently moved to the Ministry of Community Development and Internal Affairs to maintain its momentum throughout the villages in the long term, under the leadership of the village designated government representatives.
“However, we still have some areas requiring future improvement particularly with the appropriate management of the modern generated waste streams from electronics, vehicles, used oils, chemicals and plastics to name a few.”
The Prime Minister adds the association is highly supported by the Government because it promotes the active participation needed from the private sector and individuals.
“We can all witness the impact of technology and economic development to our lifestyles as most of us present here this morning (yesterday) have a mobile phone. Most of our families now have more than one car, latest TV brands and computers, etc.
“These will all turn into waste very soon and will become a problem to our environment, as we do not have the appropriate management systems and facilities. The characteristics of our wastes these days are dictated by our ways of living and economic development.
“While we enjoy the comfort and convenience of having these products to satisfy our lifestyles, they can become a problem if we do not have the appropriate interventions and measures.”
Tuilaepa challenged the association to use their areas of business and expertise to find solutions to Samoa’s waste problems. He also indicated the need for the association to work side by side with the appropriate government agencies in keeping Samoa clean and pollution-free.
Association President and Managing Director of Waste Management Company, Marina Sua Keil said the association was established because of the shared vision amongst local recycler operators, waste generators and environmental supporters to keep Samoa clean in their various areas of expertise and business.
The association is in partnership with Waste Management, Pacific Recycles, Hyundai & Ford Service Center, YWAM Inc., Soil Health Pacific, Vailima Breweries & Paradise Beverages, One Scrap, Metal Man, Power Inc., BEST and S.S.A.B.