Anyone who has spent a little time overseas is probably dismayed at the apparent lack of waste sorting and recycling in Seychelles. Seychelles produce a lot of waste per capita, but because the population is tiny, the total amounts have typically not been enough to make export economically viable, with a few exceptions. The costs to ship waste to recycling markets overseas is high, and there is also the carbon footprint of transport and the recycling process to consider.
Right now, in the 3R’s of waste management REDUCE, RE-USE, RECYCLING, the first option: REDUCE is always the best option, and we can do this by buying only what we need, avoiding overpackaging and plastic bags, having a compost to remove organics out of the waste stream, etc. The country currently lacks the facilities to separate, collect and recycle or reuse materials generated by households and businesses. Most resources and items that could be recycled or composted are at present treated as waste and transported from resorts and local islands to landfill. As the country develops it seems inevitable that more consumer goods will become available, consumption will increase and so will the amount of material that will need to be recycled, reused or disposed.
Six Senses Zil Pasyon is actively looking for ways to reduce the waste generated and dispose of it properly:
We talk with our suppliers to reduce packaging when delivering supplies.
Our printing paper is eco-labelled or recycled and we re-use the reverse side of printed paper for notes, reducing numbers of trees needed to be cut down.
We try to reduce use of plastic bags as much as possible to reduce waste, instead using bins that can be washed or linen bags.
Both guests and hosts are provided with re-usable glass water bottles rather than disposable plastic bottles.
Guests are encouraged to take disposable and hazardous waste items back to their own countries, where recycling facilities are more sophisticated.
Rechargeable batteries, energy-saving light bulbs with a long lifespan, purchases in bulk to avoid unnecessary packaging, the re-use of office paper, kitchen oil, waste wood and other materials are some of the many measures, through which the amount of waste on the island is reduced.
We have created our own recycling corner where waste is separated into paper, plastic, metal, glass, organic waste and toxic waste.
A composting site has been built in which all our food waste from the kitchen and restaurants is composted together with garden waste. The composting soil generated from this activity is reused in our landscape and gardening.
To make our composting as effective and odourless as possible we have implemented waste separation in the kitchen where all the food, except meat and seafood, is collected for composting. The reason meat and seafood is excluded is that these items decompose slower as well as to avoid attracting rodents. The garden waste is shredded using our chipping machine, in which some garden waste is used for composting and some for footpaths and around plants reducing unwanted weeds. As a final note, you are encouraged not to wrap you luggage with plastic wrapping as plastic is non-biodegradable item. When thrown away it takes over 100 years for it to degrade.