More than 300 million metric tonnes of plastic waste are produced each year. However, the world is still confronted with managing the tonnes of waste it generates. In Africa, the generation of plastic waste is more pronounced and in some cases, has caused disasters.
In Kenya, hundreds of tonnes of plastic lie untouchable on roadsides and in gutters unattended to. Although there are a number of dumpsites in the country, managing plastic waste remains a challenge. One environmentalist has found an innovative way to deal with the mounting waste in Kenya.
Harrison Oloo started a waste management company out of a passion for environmental conservation. He added that he was also motivated to start his company after seeing people throw plastic from car windows.
”We started the initiative because of Environmental issues that we had in the area, people were just throwing waste everywhere, whenever you walk, you see someone throwing plastic waste through the car window, this is what drove us to start the business,” he told the Nation.
He started the company with about $1000 and today, he has grown the company into a multi-million venture and has created job opportunities for youths in the region. Oloo said that his business is all about the environment conversation for the next generation.
”I look at my little children, and probably my grandchildren who are yet to come, and ask myself what kind of environment are they going to live in,” he said. ”This bothers me so much, so when I look at this project, I want any other person who comes after me to push for the initiative so that we can have a clean and better environment to live in.”
His company collects trash from a dumpsite and sorts out the plastic waste and then transports it to manufacturing companies in Kenya. These companies then recycle the plastic waste before they are transported abroad to beverage manufacturing companies.
So far, his company has employed 20 people who “conduct the packaging process of dumped plastic wastes from trash to better appealing materials.”
Despite the relative success of his business, Oloo said there are plenty of challenges he needs to surmount. According to him, the high license charges from the government have been a hindrance to his plans to expand his business.