One of the things COLCHA understands well is that you can’t protect local culture, art and heritage if we don’t protect our environment for future generations. One such way of accomplishing this is to reduce our impact on the environment through a reduction in the use of plastics and Styrofoam especially in our daily lives.
Earlier this year on the 20th March 2018 the Government of Belize via cabinet decision past a policy to reduce plastic and Styrofoam pollution through the phasing out of single-use plastic shopping bags, Styrofoam and plastic food utensils by April 22nd 2019.
The use of these items is generally limited to a few minutes but their presence in the environment can last for decades. These then find themselves into landfills, along our highways, waterways, coastlines and into the sea. Recently Belize has been experiencing an increase in the occurrences of floating debris washing up on our shores much of which consist of plastic and Styrofoam. These not only pollute along the coast but also cause harm to wildlife and fish.
This year COLCHA is teaming up with Oceana Belize to create COROZAL 1st ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE CONCERT. Through this collaboration both organizations seeks to create an opportunity to work with and sensitize vendors on the use of single use plastics and Styrofoam containers and the effects on the environment and how we can be more responsible caretakers of the environment.
During COLCHA & Ocean Belize’s initial meeting with the vendors everyone was excited about the idea and many were aware of the damage and pollution that plastics and Styrofoam have on the environment. The vendors were also happy to hear that for this year’s Corozal Christmas Bram all vendors will be provided with biodegradable substitute containers and plastic bags.
It is believed that once we create opportunities where food vendors are sensitized about the damage plastic and Styrofoam has on the environment, the transition away from single use containers will be a more welcoming one and provide for a paradigm shift in the way our community takes on stewardship of the environment.
It is our hope that Belizeans countrywide both vendors and consumers alike will transition away from single use plastic and show the world that change is possible and it begins with all us!
Bernard Codd / Secretary General
Cel # 501-674-4546 Web: colcha.org
Address: #99 5th Avenue, Corozal Town, Corozal, Belize