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The Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo.) has handed over a box truck, valued at approximately $7 million, to Recycling Partners of Jamaica Limited (RPJ) as part of the Government’s commitment to environmental protection.
Funding for the procurement of the unit was provided under a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between TPDCo. and the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF). The truck will serve communities in the western section of the island in Negril, collecting bottles from established collection points and depots for recycling.
Minister of Housing, Urban Renewal, Environment and Climate Change, Hon. Pearnel Charles Jr., who spoke at the ceremony on October 21 at the recycling company’s Lake’s Pen address in St. Catherine, said the Government continues to seek to find sustainable pathways to productivity, while [preserving] the environment.
“I look forward to what is going to be a challenging and exciting opportunity to change the trajectory of how Jamaica sees environment protection. It is not an isolated issue. It is one we must all participate in. The Government remains committed to the environmental protection agenda and climate change agenda, and moving from agenda to action,” he said.
In a message from Minister of Tourism, Edmund Bartlett, read by Acting Executive Director, TPDCo., Stephen Edwards, he said the Ministry and its agencies continue to implement various strategies geared at preserving the country’s tourism product.
“The procurement of this box truck is one such way we are assisting and mitigating the impact of pollution and destruction of the environment. This will allow for the efficient collection of plastics and other pollutants within the town of Negril, which will benefit directly from this investment,” Mr. Bartlett said.
Speaking with JIS News, Chairman, RPJ, Damien King, said the entity has been “re-established as the corporate vehicle that is going to achieve Jamaica’s objective of collecting the vast majority of plastic bottles, which are now going into the waste stream”.
“We are thrilled with the donation of the box truck, because right now we are involved in putting in place the infrastructure and the rolling stock that we need to get the bottles from established collection points and depots to the locations where they are compressed, packed and shipped to companies for recycling,” he said.
RPJ is a registered charity and the designated national recycling entity mandated to remove plastic bottles from the environment and to divert these from landfills through engagement with various stakeholders