For Global Recycling Day
Dubbed the ‘United Nations of Recycling’, the World Council of Recycling Associations (WCRA) convened in Singapore on May 21 to hear about Global Recycling Day. “The last event racked up an outreach exceeding 687 million people around the world,” said Ranjit Singh Baxi of UK-based J&H Sales International, outgoing President of BIR and also Founding President of the Global Recycling Foundation. “For the next Global Recycling Day, my goal is to cross the 1 billion mark,” he told delegates.
Other statistical highlights of the last GRD included: 19.4 million total online impressions on social media in the lead-up to the day; at least 25 global events as well as ‘countless’ micro-events; and more than 42,000 GRD web page viewings in March alone. Furthermore, a large number of high-profile brands (including Pepsico, Nespresso, Dell and L’Oreal) engaged with GRD via Twitter on the day.
“In two years, we have been able to create a global movement,” enthused Mr Baxi. However, the launch of the Global Recycling Foundation underlined the importance of acquiring adequate funding to ensure that the GRD achieves its goals of changing the public mindset about recycling and gaining recognition for the ‘phenomenal’ economic, social and environmental contribution of the recycling industry. “For Global Recycling Day to succeed, we certainly need funding,” he insisted. “The task is big and the mission is big. Without money, we can do nothing.”
At the WCRA meeting in Singapore, leaders of several national and regional recycling associations signalled their appreciation of the Global Recycling Day’s successes to date and highlighted some of their own initiatives and plans to boost its impact in the future. These included Brian Shine (Chair of the US Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries), Sanjay Mehta (President of the Material Recycling Association of India), Nasser Aboura (President of the Bureau of Middle East Recycling) and Jean-Philippe Carpentier (President of French recycling association FEDEREC).
BIR Director General Arnaud Brunet echoed the views of all contributors to the WCRA meeting in praising the vision and dynamism shown by Mr Baxi in launching the Global Recycling Day initiative. “Without him and his drive,” said Mr Brunet, “none of this would have happened.”
There was also recognition at the WCRA gathering in Singapore for the efforts of Mir Mujtaba in promoting the GRD initiative. Mr Baxi presented the Vice President of the Bureau of Middle East Recycling with a certificate to honour his ambassadorial role on behalf of the Global Recycling Foundation.