By Confidente Reporter
ECO Awards Alliance, the Hospitality Association of Namibia (HAN) and the Federation of Namibian Tourism Associations (FENATA), as well as Recycle Namibia Forum (RNF), have declared 2018 as the year of ‘Joining hands and linking brands, for a cleaner Namibia in 2018’.
The stakeholders have decided to focus on not only increasing awareness about waste management initiatives, but to encourage all its members and partners to join hands in ensuring a cleaner Namibia.
This was contained in a joint press release by the industry players, in which they stress that the country’s pristine qualities, expressed in slogans such as ‘Namibia, a land of untouched beauty’, had been used effectively to attract visitors to the country.
According the organisations, unfortunately, fast life, consumerism and convenience have caught up with “this remote part of the world too”, with residents and visitors leaving tracks of waste behind, where many years ago, unspoilt nature ruled. “In addition to clean-up campaigns (a positive and visual incentive), the entire tourism industry should ideally contribute towards the reduction in waste accumulation at destinations such as the Etosha National Park, Sossusvlei and the Fish River Canyon,” the media release said. “The following action plan is being developed, to make the reduction of waste a reality: encourage the production and use of re-usable bottles, (this could be a lucrative branding exercise for some RNF members, and a welcome corporate gift from operators and service providers).
“To set up recycling/waste collection centres at strategic places, outside entry gates to national parks, with Ministry of Environment and Tourism and Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR), local recycling operators and stakeholders sharing the responsibility for waste management,” the media release said further.
The stakeholders further seek to engage with suppliers on transport opportunities for waste material, and foster a “take along only to re-use or to dispose of correctly” attitude, amongst staff and guests, as well as highlight all good practices in waste management already in place in Namibia.
They also plan on encouraging Namibians and guests to consider first, before they accept any single use items – be it bags or straws or plastic cutlery and containers.
“HAN, Eco Awards and RNF jointly have a wide enough database to get the word out and to call for input, buy-in and assistance-making, and this week, all three organisations already sent out a strong message to the hundreds of members among them, to encourage all of them to dedicate 2018 towards a cleaner Namibia.”
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