On March 18th we celebrate Global Recycling Day. Recycling is a key part of the circular economy, helping to protect our natural resources. In September 2018, the Bureau of International Recycling and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization proposed to introduce the Global Recycling Day. They aimed to recognise it as a United Nations official day. Moreover, recycling is amongst the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals 2030. In addition, there are already many individuals, governments and organisations taking direct action to support the global green agenda.
Please also read: Waste management in Lithuania
Usually, we consider the Earth to have six natural resources. Among them are: water, air, oil, natural gas, coal and minerals. These resources represent the basis of our existence. All our food, sustenance, and belongings ultimately come from these six elements. Today humanity cannot survive without them.
However, these resources are finite and rapidly running out. With what will we replace them, once they are gone? Meanwhile, we pour billions of tons of waste into landfill sites every year. The simple solution to this is recycling – the so-called ‘Seventh Resource’. This resource can be used again and again! Besides, recycling helps to:
- Combat climate change
- Boosts local employment around the world
- Conserve the earth’s six primary resources
Every day the Seventh Resource saves over 700 million tonnes in CO2 emissions. It also offsets all CO2 emissions generated by the aviation industry annually. In addition, recycling played and continues to play an important role during COVID-19 times. There is no doubt recycling is very important for the future of our planet and humanity.
The theme of this year’s Global Recycling Day is ‘Recycling Heroes’. The Global Recycling Foundation announced a competition to nominate Recycling Heroes.
We want to recognise Recycling Heroes for their outstanding contributions during these unprecedented times. Nominations are invited from individuals, communities and businesses who have continued to make significant impact towards recycling in the last 12 months and whose efforts will contribute towards a greener future of our world.
Ten winners will be chosen from across the globe. Moreover, each one will receive a prize of US$ 500. Furthermore, these heroes will also feature on all Global Recycling Day social media channels. On the website of Global Recycling Day you can find more information about recycling activists, businesses, cities, world leaders, raising youth stars and winners of 2020.
Lera Popovych – our recycling hero
European Wilderness Society has its own recycling heroes. One of them is Lera Popovych – a young lady from Ukraine. Lera not only took part in the International Youth Green Conference in 2019 and helped to organise UzhGreenFest in 2020 in Ukraine. She also launched her volunteering initiative “Eco – Chewbacca”. Lera uses her bike to move around the city and collect separated resources from people. The bike does not release harmful emissions into the atmosphere. Then she does the final separation of waste. Afterwards, together with all the previously collected material stored at home, she brings everything to the recycling point. Besides, she recycles many things herself. Lera continues sharing her experience among the local youth and promotes the zero-waste lifestyle.
Collecting and protecting
European Wilderness Society also makes its contribution to recycling and environmental protection. One of our initiatives is the recently finalised project Clean up Synevyr National Nature Park, Ukraine, financially supported by EOCA. This project not only helped to change the attitude of Ukrainian protected areas staff and local inhabitants towards waste management issues and develop new solutions. It also provided tools to support introduction of regular recycling initiatives. The project’s campaign ‘Bring plastic – take free entry ticket’ motivated Synevyr National Nature Park’s staff and visitors to contribute to separated waste collection for further recycling. Moreover, it helped park visitors to explore its nature and value it stronger!
Recently, the increasing number of visitors is impacting nature significantly. This is the case especially during the COVID-19 pandemic times. Therefore raising awareness and providing education on proper behaviour, and thereby helping to minimise the impact of visitors on nature is critical. The European Wilderness Society therefore launched the initiative Respect Nature, which is very helpful in that.
Planning your trip properly, packing your gear appropriately, using suitable for recycling stuff, avoiding single-use plastic, and taking home everything you brought in the nature. It all confirms your respect to the nature and helps to save environment for our future generations!
Celebrate Global Recycling Day with us! And think, what more can you do to save our green planet!
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