Waste and pollution has been identified as one of the greatest threats to sustainable development throughout the Pacific region. Nine percent of Fiji’s waste stream has been estimated to be plastics, mostly snack packs, PET bottles, and plastic bags. That 9% comes to about 168.4t.
It’s estimated that up to 135t of this plastic waste is mismanaged, ending up on roadsides, in storm drains, and ultimately making its way to the ocean. From there, each piece of plastic does one of three things: it floats on the surface of the ocean, endangering wildlife who may eat it or become entangled; it sinks, littering shallow ocean beds; or it washes up on beaches across the globe, where it comprises between 50-80% of the ocean debris on any given beach.
On the bright side, accumulation of plastic rubbish in the environment is completely avoidable. Proper waste management, public awareness campaigns to prevent littering, and minimising plastic use can all contribute to reducing overall plastic waste and litter.
Fiji is leading the charge in the Pacific region to minimise the harm that plastics are doing to our natural environment. The Fijian government has partnered with nations including Australia, New Zealand, Japan, China, and the United States to export plastic waste for recycling, including a buyback agreement with Coca-Cola Amatil.
On a local level, Lomani Island Resort is committed to minimising the amount of plastic waste we produce. Throughout the resort, plastic shopping bags are banned. When you check in to Lomani Island, you’ll receive a complimentary reuseable canvas bag to use throughout our stay – perfect for transporting shopping, wet beach towels, and much more. We’ve also stopped offering plastic straws with your drinks and cocktails. If you need a straw, please ask – the one you get will be made of paper, and much easier to recycle.
Lastly, Lomani Island Resort has committed to recycling all plastic bottles used and collected on our grounds. If you need to dispose of a PET plastic bottle, please use the recycling bins provided, so we can ensure it makes its way to the proper recycling facility.