KENYA: Dow to recycle 30,000 tons of plastic waste in Nairobi

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KENYA: Dow to recycle 30,000 tons of plastic waste in Nairobi ©Dow Packaging/shuttertock

In Kenya, the American chemical company Dow will collect and recycle 30,000 tons of plastic packaging in the capital Nairobi. The initiative will contribute to the development of the circular economy in this country, which recycles only 2,400 tons of plastic per month, according to the Kenyan authorities.

After Egypt, Guinea and Nigeria, U.S. packaging solutions provider Dow is continuing its cleanup journey in Kenya. The American chemical company will collect and recycle 30,000 tons of plastic waste in the capital Nairobi. This includes bottles, cans and plastic bags. The operation envisaged since 2019 will finally be implemented through the waste recovery start-up Mr. Green Africa.

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“Through a mobile app, consumers can sort and separate plastic waste at home, before scheduling its collection by Mr. Green Africa, which will then process it,” Dow says. The initiative funded by Dow’s Business Impact Fund is part of its “Stop the Waste” program, which aims to collect, reuse and recycle one million metric tons of plastic worldwide by 2030.

Ultimately, Dow’s project in Kenya will establish sorting centers in counties that will allow reclaimers to bring in plastic waste for a fee, prior to recovery at dedicated facilities. According to the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), supermarkets in Kenya distributed up to 100 million plastic bags in 2019 alone, just two years after the East African country banned the use, manufacture and import of plastic bags. For Frederick Njehu, the head of Greenpeace in Nairobi, “the remaining 76% of unrecycled waste is a threat to marine life, rivers and soils.”

Benoit-Ivan Wansi

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