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New PET Plastic Collection Point

Yesterday, the first PET plastic recycling machine was inaugurated in Porto Santo. 

This new initiative, which aims to reward residents for returning and recycling PET plastics has been fully financed by the Environment Programme of the EEAGrants Fund, as part of the ‘Porto Santo sem Lixo Marinho’ project, and has been fully financed by local commercial establishments.

As part of this initiative, users receive discount vouchers when placing PET beverage packaging in the return machine installed in the Pingo Doce supermarket (Vila Baleira), which can then be used in participating establishments. 

“This is an innovative system in the national context. There has been a large drop in the adhesion of private establishments to systems that are temporarily financed by the State. With this initiative, we intend to work in direct contact with the local community and with commercial establishments in Porto Santo, ensuring co-responsibility in reducing the use and increasing the  recycling of plastic waste, which has greatly contributed to pollution in the Madeira Archipelago,” explained Ângela Morgado, executive director of ANP|WWF, who are promoting the Porto Santo Sem Lixo Marinho project, which includes the launch of this system.

In turn, in addition to the machine for collecting PET packaging, a consortium made up of ANP|WWF, AIDGLOBAL, Água e Resíduos da Madeira, Porto Santo City Council and ARDITI, which also has the support of WWF Norway, and the Regional Secretary for the Environment and Climate Change and Pingo Doce, has established several actions to raise awareness of the population residing in Porto Santo and defined a Community Management Plan, which runs until 2025 and which has made it possible to monitor commitments in the management and reduction of marine litter originating on the island.

“Here, commercial establishments, fishermen, educational communities, administrations and political power dialogue in public consultation sessions and in the signing of transformational commitments regarding the reduction of the use of single-use plastic and the increase of recycling targets. In this line of community action, students from elementary schools in the municipality of Porto Santo will be “supervisors” of the commitments of the municipality and commercial establishments, in an educational process that aims to train citizens even more aware of the scourge of plastic pollution. 

“We want Porto Santo to remain on the front line to stop plastics entering water courses and the ocean. We all have a responsibility to contribute to the reduction of single-use plastic and our municipality is extremely concerned with ensuring the best practices to preserve the biodiversity of the island of Porto Santo and the ocean that surrounds it,” reiterated Nuno Batista, President of Porto Santo City Hall.

Amílcar Gonçalves, chairman of the Board of Directors of ARM – Águas e Resíduos da Madeira, SA, reinforced that “the island of Porto Santo has the potential to develop these innovative and sustainable projects, which contribute to the preservation of the Madeira Region” .

“The involvement of the Porto Santo community, especially the 37 entrepreneurs who joined the project, is for us the most notable aspect of this initiative, as we are all creating a pathway to sustainability.”

Samantha Gannon

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