10 december 2021

The Future of Plastic Waste in Seychelles

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TFO Program

Since 2020, the open innovation program “The Future of_ Plastic Waste” has aimed to implement practical solutions for recycling, transformation, and reduction of plastic waste in the Indian Ocean by supporting innovative and multi-stakeholder initiatives in Seychelles. This program is conducted in partnership with the Government of Seychelles, the French National Research Institute for Sustainable Development (IRD), the company SoScience, and the Société des Explorations de Monaco. It is part of the DiDEM project, coordinated by IRD, which aims to facilitate the dialogue between science and decision-makers for integrated management of coastal and marine environments in the Western Indian Ocean.

 

The Futur of Plastic Waste in Seychelles
Poster of the TFO Program

6 projects selected

In the wake of the call for projects launched in October 2020, 38 participants met during the partnership days organized on May 27 and 28. These days and the exchanges that followed led to the emergence of six collaborative projects selected in August 2021. They targeted the following actions and objectives

 

– Understanding and mapping of plastic pollution sources,

– Physical collection and efficient sorting of plastic waste,

– Transformation of collected plastics,

– Environmental education and upstream awareness.

The Futur of Plastic Waste in Seychelles
Anse Capucin. Southeast of Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat.
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November 30, 2021 in the Seychelles: the members of the jury deliberate...© Katrin Perchat.

3 award-winning projects. And the winners are...

Among these 6 projects, the selection committee, which met on 30 November 2021, designated the 3 award-winning projects of the program. For their launch, they will benefit from support over the first six months and a start-up budget. The complementarity of the selected projects, as well as their feasibility, have been carefully evaluated according to a grid of criteria established beforehand.

Winning project n°1: Launch of an awareness campaign

This campaign will be led by several local actors and brings together multiple skills, such as the Department of Blue Economy, the Foundation for Sustainable Tourism, the Ministry of Education of Seychelles or IRD. It will aim to improve awareness and education on waste among the population of Seychelles and the various actors of civil society. The objectives of this campaign:

– Reduce waste production and increase recycling efforts,

– Minimize residual waste,

– Prevent and limit illegal dumping through a collaborative effort between the various stakeholders in the public and private sectors and civil society.

Winning Project n°2: Connected Collection in Seychelles

This project brings together two local NGOs focused on sustainable tourism development, the Sustainable Tourism Foundation (SSTF) and the Seychelles Hospitality and Tourism Association (SHTA), a local plastic waste solutions consultancy, Yes Consulting, and a social enterprise based in India: Sanshodhan. Sanshodhan has developed a digital application that links manufacturers, consumers, and recycling companies in a single virtuous cycle. This networking promotes a more transparent, efficient, and sustainable recyclable waste management system. The idea is to adapt this concept to the Seychelles context.

 

Winning Project n°3: A Recycling Machine for Everyone

While reducing the amount of waste going to landfills, this project aims to promote simple, inexpensive, and easy-to-use technologies to treat and transform waste. It is based on a global community project: the Precious Plastic Project. The idea is to involve local actors and individuals in designing useful and low-impact products to eventually develop a micro-circular economy by creating new products.

 

Global and large-scale fight against plastic

As in many regions of the world, plastic pollution increases in the Indian Ocean and even affects very isolated areas or islands such as Aldabra. On a regional scale, the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), the French Development Agency (AFD), and the French Facility for Global Environment (FFEM) signed on 9 July 2021 a financing agreement for the ExPLOI project Indian Ocean Plastic Expedition. This regional project aims to coordinate the fight against plastic pollution and to promote the circular economy. It is complementary to the approach taken through the DiDEM project and the TFO initiative in Seychelles.

 

Stop plastic pollution

Accumulation of plastic waste on a beach in Comoros © IRD - Nourrdine Mirhani

Underwater coral reefs ecosystems in the Indian Ocean are directly impacted by plastic pollution. Eparses Islands © IRD - Pascale Chabanet

Pollution by macro-waste. Glorieuses Islands © IRD - Pascale Chabanet

Accumulation of plastic waste on a beach in Comoros © IRD - Nourrdine Mirhani

Plastic waste in the forest. Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat

Polluted Mangrove. Mahé. Seychelles © Katrin Perchat

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