PETCO, the PET Recycling Company (Pty) Ltd, will be hosting the European Association of Plastics Recycling and Recovery Organisation (EPRO) for their first general meeting to take place on African soil in Cape Town on 20 November 2013.
To maximise the opportunity of learning from each other’s best practices with regard to waste management, recycling, the green economy and packaging initiatives, a global colloquium with leaders in the recycling and waste management industries will take place on Thursday, 21 November 2013.
The colloquium, titled “Global Partnerships for a Sustainable Recycling Sector: Sharing. Dialogue Action”, will see 15 international speakers paired with 15 local industry leaders sharing their views on the waste management and recycling economy, trends, legislative tools, technical innovation and more.
According to Cheri Scholtz, chief executive officer of PETCO, EPRO is an association of the national organisations charged with organising and promoting recycling and recovery of plastics throughout Europe. PETCO is an associate member of EPRO and the only African organisation represented, and is also a member of the Global Alliance for Recycling & Sustainable Development (GARSD) – an alliance of countries including Mexico, Thailand, Uruguay, Brazil and Colombia promoting sustainable waste management in developing countries.
“Both platforms are important portals for the exchange of ideas, innovation and learning for South Africa. Our association with these international bodies affords us the opportunity to learn from international best practices, as well as to have a say on decisions that could ultimately impact global markets, legislation and trends, decisions that have a direct influence on the future of recycling and waste management here at the southern tip of Africa, where we have our own unique set of challenges,” Cheri says.
“It is unlikely that we will ever again have so many international experts on our shores at the same time,” Cheri says. To this end, PETCO is inviting all industry partners and other interested parties to attend the full-day conference, which will be held at The Pavilion, V&A Waterfront.
The conference enjoys the support of South African Recovery Action Group (RAG), whose members include Collect-a-Can, The Glass Recycling Company, Hulamin Limited, the Packaging Council of South Africa, the Paper Recycling Association of South Africa, PETCO, Plastics SA, Polyco, the SA Plastics Recycling Organisation and the Polystyrene Council.
“We are hoping to see representatives of the national and provincial government, municipalities and local authorities, waste management companies, collectors, sustainability practitioners, brand owners, retailers and packaging designers, non-government organisations (NGOs), cooperatives, industry associations, academics and their students participating in discussions and sharing ideas, as well as making use of the opportunity to network and pose their questions during two debates that have been included in the programme,” Cheri says.
The colloquium will kick off with a video address from Janez Potocnik, European Union commissioner on the environment, and will be followed by presentations by local and international speakers who will be able to give a balanced and insightful overview on how to overcome the challenges and maximise the opportunities.
To enable the European contingent to learn more about initiatives taking place in South Africa, various exhibitions will be on display by local companies who are involved in recycling, waste management and plastic packaging.
Cheri concludes: “We look forward to a conference that will see global thought leaders meet and interact with their South African counterparts for a time of joint learning, sharing and inspiring each other to action that will cause a ripple effect around the world for generations to come, in line with our colloquium tagline, ‘Sharing, Dialogue, Action’.”
The PET Recycling Company
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