Sunday, September 26, 2021
Plastic Collection is equals to reduction in environmental degradation, climate advocates tell Nigerians  Story by Temiloluwa Oyeniyi

Today, many Nigerians still remain unaware of plastic collection for recycling as they focus on the neat jobs rendering the dirty jobs unattended to. In this part of the world, most people see picking up plastics as a dirty chore while some other drop their emptied bottles on the ground ignorantly.

Research has shown that some plastic business personalities like Olamide Ayeni Babajide recognized the dollar value of Lagos’s trash and she began to collect plastics to manufacture wall decor for sale. However, some other personalities use plastics for interior decors like flower vase, pen case, sitting puff, and many others.

In a chat with an advocate of Climate Action and the Program Coordinator of Green Initiative, Ayotomiwa Ogunsua affirmed that plastic collection is not a dirty job but everybody’s business. According to him, over 80 per cent of the 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic that has been produced has not been recycled, which means that they are lying somewhere in landfills, oceans, or littering about the environment which is detrimental to the climatic condition.

He said, “Plastic collection is actually part of the way forward to a better and sustainable world, especially in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Plastic waste has been a menace to the society with different negative effects, it can be said that even the 21st century man is made of plastic. Also, Peer reviewed studies show that the rate at which plastic in ocean keeps increasing, if proper care isn’t taken, plastic will entirely outweigh fish in the oceans by 2050.Therefore, devising means for it’s collection can yield a fortune in little time.”

According to the United Nations, some eight million tons a year of plastics is leaking into the oceans which has become the kings of trash and harms hundreds of speecies. It is said that people are too busy and wealthy to redeem their own bottles.

Also, on social media there was the story a man in Brooklyn who tried collecting cans and plastics out of the garbage for cash. At first, he found it ridiculous, but when he started making five dollars daily for a hundred cans and bottles, he found it ridiculously easy. According to him, something is better than nothing when you have nothing. He then became addicted to picking plastics and cans from dustbins, supermarkets and recreational centres when he knew he could make so much. Alas on his second haul, he started making 3.52 dollars per hour.

While speaking further, the climate advocate, Ayotomiwa said the process of collecting plastic is straight forward, depending on the purpose of collection. He said his experience over the years has been about a group of individuals from different professions coming out in the morning on the street for morning exercises which implies getting a plastic waste source, as well as devising a means of collecting it and it depends on the purpose of collection, if it sales, one can sell per kg, and if it’s recycling, you recycle it.

Mr. Ogunsua opined in his interview that if all, including government parastatal, can come together to devise a method called the 4Rs, that is, refuse, reduce, reuse and recycle, the footprint of reducing environmental degradation and poor climatic condition is ascertained.

He said further, “It’s rather sad that we are still grappling with improper waste disposal, not to talk of waste sorting. At this point we need government, relevant agencies and all stakeholders to sit up and ensure we curb this menace, improper waste disposal should be the least of our problems but it’s actually topping it right now. Nonetheless, Plastic collection is indeed a lucrative business, especially with value addition such as recycling and upcycling. We now have graduates and professionals that are actively into waste collection and they are doing fine. More so, it helps to reduce environmental diseases.”

However, if all you need to start collecting plastics irrespective of your status to earn five to ten times of what you make every month in a week are gloves, trash bags and nose covers, you might want to start the business. By doing this, you are trending on the path of not just becoming rich but also contributing to ending the high rate of harmful diseases in the country.

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