general information
recycling centres
correct sorting of waste
composting

recycling mobile phones and batteries
what now
natural formulas for gardening
Q & A
Mission Verte updates

Recycling in Mauritius

Up until recently the recycling of household waste has been negligible. Certainly many of us who come from countries where it is compulsory to sort your waste ready for collection and recycling have been concerned about what to do with our tins, glass, paper and plastic. Some of the larger supermarkets have had plastic recycling bins for some time, but what about all our other waste? With the establishment of the NGO Mission Verte in 2007 the situation has begun to change, and there are now around 16 recycling centres around the island (see right column). The NGO's aim is to raise public awareness about the need to reduce, re-use and recycle household waste. Their efforts are largely aimed at promoting the sorting and deposit of paper/cardboard, tins and plastic by the general public for collection by local companies for recycling, but they are also keen to encourage composting of green waste by individuals.

Mare Chicose is home to the island's only household waste landfill site. Created in the 1990s, this landfill is under pressure due to the ever increasing amount of waste material created. An estimated 375,000 tonnes of solid waste were created in 2003 (1,200 tonnes per day), which is forecast to grow to 418,000 tonnes in 2014 and 510,000 tonnes in 2034. To relieve the situation the government has suggested the establishment of an incineration plant which would handle around three-quarters of waste created and would generate electricity. On the downside there are concerns that the waste in Mauritius, which is largely green (garden waste, vegetables, etc.), is not suitable for incineration, and also that the chimney would have major negative public health, environmental and economic impacts. Environmental agencies in Mauritius suggest that minimizing the creation of waste by recycling some of it, and by composting green waste, will expand the lifespan of the landfill site sufficiently, removing the need for an incinerator or for further landfill sites.

Correct sorting of waste

The bins have been provided for previously sorted waste. Please follow the signs on the bins, or the leaflets available from Mission Verte. Unfortunately, some people have not sorted their waste correctly and others have simply dumped boxes of unsorted waste around the bins, particularly glass bottles. This is not contributing to the recycling movement and is making the collecting areas a mess, requiring others to tidy the rubbish up.

  ITEMS YES NO
PAPERS AND


THIN CARDBOARD

Paper: Newspapers, magazines, circulars, writing paper and envelopes, telephone directories, books and exercise books.

Thin cardboard: 'bristol' paper, for example: cereal boxes, medicine boxes, biscuit or cigarette packets, etc.

Please remove the magazines from their plastic packing.

Juice, milk or soup cartons.





Soiled paper or carbon paper, paper hankies, waxed paper and wallpaper, plasticized or metalized paper (candy or some chocolate wrappers).

PLASTIC
Bottles, jars, pots and containers of ALL types of plastic, and they are numerous!

Crush or compress your bottles before throwing them away, they will become less bulky and you will have more storage space.


Only PET bottles are accepted in Pavillon, Cap Malheureux.
IMPORTANT
If in doubt check the signs on the doors of the bins.
ALUMINIUM AND METAL
Drink cans only!

Aluminium cans are discarded in the plastic compartment, in all containers.

Preserve/jam cans, aerosols, metallic trays, aluminium pans or crockery.
CARDBOARD
All boxes and packaging made of corrugated cardboard.

Please fold your cardboard, it will take up less space!

Dirty paperboards, containers of pizzas, pies or other food.
GLASS

UPDATED!!!

You can dispose of your glass bottles directly at atelier at Roche Bois nr 16 - St Martin Street- Port Louis



Recycling centres

  • Caudan Waterfront | Pres du Casino
  • Couvent de Belle-Rose
  • Barkly |Beau-Bassin
  • Flacq | Parking Way
  • Forest Side | Parking Winners
  • Labourdonnais | Parking Ecole du Nord
  • Le Bocage International School, Moka
  • Mahebourg | Parking London
  • Moka | Ecole du Centre
  • Reunion | Parking Winners
  • Roche Bois nr 16 - St Martin Street
  • St. Antoine | Zone Industrielle
  • St Pierre | Kendra Commercial Center
  • Tamarin | Ecole Paul & Virginie
  • Tamarin | Parking Barachois commercial Center (La Place Cap Tamarin)
  • Tamarina | IRS

    Updated: 14 January 2014

 

Composting

Currently, composting is mainly undertaken by those involved in agriculture, such as fruit/vegetable farmers and cattle/poultry farmers. Since 1995 the National Federation of Young Farmers Clubs has been involved in composting in a number of villages, using the end result on fruit and vegetable crops. The government recently created a new impetus in composting by launching an island-wide school-based project to promote composting at a community level. Mission Verte is also promoting the concept of composting to prevent unnecessary material further contributing to the landfill site.

 

 

Composting in your garden - child's play!

By using your own compost, you will avoid polluting the earth with industrial artificial fertilisers. And you will also reduce the quantity of your household refuse by a third. So much waste which will not be incinerated! You can add your vegetable and fruit peelings, your eggshells… any organic waste, but no grease.

Add also grass cuttings, branches, dead leaves, old flowers… what is known as vegetation waste. Everything can be recycled in a garden: what comes from the ground returns to the ground to protect and nourish the soil. It breaks up and degrades gradually on contact with the air and ambient moisture, helped by micro-organisms like microscopic fungi and bacteria. Do not worry; this process is completely natural since it reproduces on a small scale what happens in the forest, which creates its own compost, known as humus.

To make your compost, you can use a composter or prepare it in a corner of the garden, in the open air.

You will find more information on this site:

Natural formulas for gardeners

These natural preparations can fight various fungal diseases. Always let the mixture settle in the sprayer and then shake well before use.

  • Cover 90 grams of garlic pieces with vegetable oil and add 1 litre of soapy water. Leave to soak for a day and then filter. To spray, dilute 1 part of solution with 50 parts of water.
  • Pour boiling water on fresh or dried chamomile flowers. Leave to infuse then cool. Use this against fungi.
  • Dilute 1 cup of whole milk with 9 cups of water and use this solution against mildew or oidium.
  • To deal with oidium, add 1 teaspoon of sodium bicarbonate to 1 litre of water. Apply every 3-4 days until the situation improves. Then treat the rose trees every 2-3 weeks while the weather is hot and humid.

www.savoirtoutfaireaujardin.com | Other ideas on: www.chacunsonbio.fr

In summer mosquitoes are a problem…

You can make this efficient and ecological trap with:

  • One 2-litre plastic bottle
  • 200 ml of water
  • 50 g brown sugar and a little hot water
  • 1 g yeast

    1. Cut the plastic bottle in half. You will need both parts, top and bottom.
    2. Mix brown sugar with a little hot water, then with 200 ml of cold water in the bottom half of the bottle.
    3. Add the yeast, without mixing. This will create carbon dioxide.
    4. Place the funnel (top part of the bottle), upside down on the inside of the other half bottle.
    5. Wrap round the bottle with some black card or tape and put it in a corner of your home.
    6. In two weeks, you'll see a lot of dead mosquitoes inside the bottle.

Recycling mobile phones and batteries

Remember that you can recycle your used cell phones and batteries as well as all types of batteries. Collection centres can be found in all Orange Shops and post offices. To encourage the collection of these items, two small easily folded cardboard boxes can be placed in offices, schools, supermarkets, etc. Contact missionverte@hotmail.com for more information if you want to obtain some of these boxes.

B.E.M. Enterprises Ltd will be responsible for the collection of these items, exporting the batteries to France for recycling. Mobile phones will be dismantled here and the plastic and metal will be recycled locally. Battery chargers and earphones can also be put in these special collection bins for recycling. Special collection boxes will be placed in some supermarkets, schools, offices, etc., in the near future.



i Today the number of mobile phone users is estimated at more than 3 billion worldwide. It has been demonstrated that if each discarded phone were recycled, this would economise 240,000 tons of raw materials and produce a reduction in greenhouse gases equivalent to the withdrawal of 4 million cars!! (Source: Nokia).

 


What now?

So, what happens to the items that have been sorted and placed in recycling bins for collection by local companies?

Paper and cardboard are collected and shredded, compacted and baled before being exported.

Plastic bottles are collected by two different companies currently. Those taken by Polypet Recyclers Ltd are sorted, compacted, baled and crushed and are exported for recycling. PET plastics are shredded into pellets and are sent to Africa to be transformed into quilts and pillows. Power Plastic Ltd in Forbach, recycles all types of plastic collected to manufacture various objects, such as dustbins, garden benches, pots, shingles, etc.

Glass normally can be crushed and exported to South Africa, however at the moment there is little market for it. Hopefully prices will go up soon.

Aluminium is recycled in Mauritius and the companies who collect plastic from the sorting bins can sell these cans to aluminium recyclers here.

  Here in Mauritius we really are only just starting the recycling process and there is still a long way to go to match the activities and achievements of other countries. Perhaps the recent government project 'Mauritius - sustainable island' will give some impetus to more environmental initiatives. One thing is for certain though: it is down to each and every one of us to look at our own lifestyle and habits and to constantly apply the three golden principles of re-use, recycle and reduce, wherever possible.  

Q & A

Here are some questions that Mission Verte have answered regarding selective sorting, containers available to the public, the recycling of waste, etc.

 

Why do you only collect plastics, paper, cardboard and aluminium cans in your sorting bins? What happens to other wastes?

90 % of your dustbin waste is of course recyclable. We have been able to find companies willing to collect some of this waste across the island, but for other types of waste (more bulky or more dangerous), we are working on the best solution for its storage and transport to plants that recycle.
We hope, with your collaboration, to be able to collect everything for recycling... Our goal is "Zero Waste" !

Why put aluminium cans in with plastic?

There is no special compartment for metal recovery. Only aluminium cans are collected at the moment. Those who recover plastic may, if they wish, sell these cans to metal recyclers. Plastic does not risk being spoilt with the liquid which sometimes remains at the bottom of the cans. Of course, they could not be discarded in the paper compartment.There are often large bags or large boxes of waste outside containers. Unfortunately, yes! But each one of us must make an effort. These containers are "voluntary dropping points", meaning that each one chooses to drop their pre-sorted waste . Unfortunately, we sometimes see full bags of unsorted or even non-recyclable items. This complicates the work of those who come to do the recovery. If the bags are too large to fit into the openings, one can introduce only the end of the bag and drop the contents in the proper compartment.The team of Mission Verte is made up of volunteers; our task is to facilitate the transport of waste to the recycling places and not to sort rubbish deposited outside the containers. This should be done by each one of us at home.

Why don’t you put more containers on the island?

These containers are expensive and we have limited financial means. We currently have 19 depots using funds obtained from the GEF/Small Grants Programme of UNDP and from several sponsors. We can only put additional ones if businesses or organizations come up with financial help, and if we are convinced that they will be serviced regularly by the recyclers.

Are you not deterred by the magnitude of the work?

Our satisfaction to see the enormous volume of recyclable waste, that was previously disposed of in rubbish bins, reach the places where it can have a second life, instead of increasing pollution at Mare Chicose is very encouraging! We believe that in a short time a large number of inhabitants have adapted very easily to selective sorting, and that with a better structured organization, we can have good results. We are but a link in the chain and the participation of all is necessary to succeed!

How to contact MIsson Verte:

3A JOSEPH AVRILLON STREET, CUREPIPE
E-mail: missionverte@hotmail.com
Phone: (230) 976 63 55
www.missionverte.com
www.facebook.com/MissionVerte.ileMaurice

 




Just a little extra...

Green Christmas gifts! (Or any celebration)

The NGO Mission Verte has some sound advice on observing Christmas customs in an environmentally friendly way. In their words 'The best gifts are those that respect nature and encourage the recipient to become aware of the ecological impact'.
Before buying your presents this year, see if you can consider some of these ideas to decrease the negative impact on the environment:

  • Buy local: is the gift made in Mauritius?
  • Best buy: is the gift short-lived or sustainable?
  • Buy healthy: is the gift futile or intelligent?
  • Buy clean: is this gift over-wrapped?
  • Buy less: too many gifts kill the gift! Or, as we say 'less is more'.
  • And use reusable bags as wrappings… It will mean less paper used!



What's news?

Mission Verte's new bin designs

Mission Verte has developed a new recycling bin project in collaboration with taktik architects. The bin has a distinctive and contemporary curved shape, making for an attractive addition to any school yard or parking space. The bins come in a twin set for paper and plastic, and can be linked as a unit or installed individually. Compact dimensions of 1.2x1.2m (base) by 2m high allow for ease of integration in any setting.

Mission Verte is planning to set up 20 bins for Winners supermarkets and in another 10 schools and commercial locations.

Posted January 2014

 

   
 


Mission Verte updates

You can now follow Mission Verte on Facebook too.

  • June 2012: News from Mission Verte

    Mission Verte now has new offices in Avrillon Lane, Curepipe, they have a new truck for waste collection and a new educational DVD available. The Executive Comittee comprises the same eight volunteers, but now they have a dynamic young woman, Sophia Lòpez-Bassols who is the new Education & Communication Project Manager.

  • Newsletter: March 2012

  • Recycling - important update (Posted February 2011 )

    Due to the abuse of the site (see photo), the recycling depot at Teste de Buch Street, Curepipe is being removed and will not be operational after Monday 14 February. This is really unfortunate as it was the only depot on the island to take glass. Until further notice there will be no depot collecting glass for recycling.

    Please remember that these depots are not a dumping ground for rubbish, but are for pre-sorted items appropriate to recycling. If the bins are full, then please take your recycling home and bring it back at another time. Do not leave boxes or bags of recycling next to the bins.



 


 

This page was updated: 14-Jan-2014
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