COPED Rwanda has found an alternative to better manage plastic waste, more than a year after the adoption of a bill banning the manufacture, import, use and sale of single-use plastic articles. The company, which specializes in the collection and transport of waste, transforms single-use plastic into construction materials
COPED Rwanda, a company specializing in waste management and transport is exploring a new solution for plastic waste management in Rwanda. It is about the transformation of single-use plastic into construction materials (tiles, roof tiles and paving stones of different colours). The waste is collected in the city of Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, from beverage suppliers.
According to Paulin Buregeya, CEO of COPED, about $80,000 (more than 76.4 million Rwandan francs) has been allocated by the government for the establishment of waste collection centres in Kigali. “The equipment to transform the collected plastic bottles into construction materials cost us $2 million (more than 1.9 billion Rwandan francs),” says Paulin Buregeya.
COPED Rwanda’s initiative follows the Rwandan authorities’ decision to ban the manufacture, import, use and sale of single-use plastic in Rwanda. These include plastic bags, cups, straws, coffee stirrers, soda and water bottles, as well as plastic food packaging. The bill was passed on June 12, 2019.
However, the Government of Rwanda has given companies a 3-year grace period to explore and adapt to other packaging alternatives. In addition to construction materials, the waste management comapny also plans to recycle plastic bottles to make new ones that “comply with national standards”.