Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 23rd 2015 Contents A28
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Monday, March 23, 2015
• Nurses Aides
• Male Attendants with at least three O'levels
• Medical Laboratory Technician
• Kitchen/Domestic House Keeper - PART TIME
OR FULL TIME WITH EXPERIENCE. MUST BE ABLE
A well-established Law Firm requires a
T- Prepare documents for stamping and registration and attend at the
Registrar General's Department, Companies Registry and BIR Office
to stamp and register deeds, bills of sale and RPO instruments
- Facilitate the execution of mortgage bills of sale
* Experience in performing the required duties
* Excellent interpersonal and communication skills
Meet the Morgans. They are a
Trinidadian family, inspired
by plastic recycling NGO Plasti-
keep to do their part to save the
world from plastic pollution.
Crista and John are the Momma
Bear and the Papa Bear. Their
children are Tristan, 10, Tessa, 6,
and the baby of the family,
Thomas, 3. They lead a regular
hectic Port-of-Spain lifestyle. It
is all about children and work.
Walk on to their veranda. The
first thing that catches your eye
is the beautiful ornate cast-iron
railing that surrounds it.
If you don t watch out you
might trip on some children s
toys scattered on the floor. The
elaborate ironwork aside, it is
fairly humdrum for a young fami-
ly.The next thing you see is less
common: a clothesline full of
plastic bags, plastic food contain-
ers and plastic food wrappers.
The Morgans collect and recycle
every bit of plastic that enters
their household. Nothing escapes,
not even the quarter-inch thin
strip of plastic that seals a bag of
They clean each bit of plastic
with dishwashing liquid and then
hang the plastic out to dry---right
next to their linens and socks.
They fill a garbage bag full of
plastic every other day. Whenever
they get a chance they drop it off
by one of the plastic collection
points operated by Plastikeep.
Mostly they use the plastic col-
lection bins at Boy Scouts in St
Ann s or by Massy Stores in Mar-
aval, conveniently located on the
way to and from school.
Their recycling habit started a
few years ago spawned by Plasti-
keep s "Plastithon"
The Plastithon involved 37
schools and ran for three years
from 2011-2014. The idea was to
get children and their families
involved in collecting and recy-
cling plastic. There were prizes
for each school, class and student
that collected the most.
The hope was that this would
plant a seed for positive change
among the 16,000 students who
were included in the outreach.
The Morgan children go to one
of the 37 Plastithon schools. Like
most people they had no idea
how much plastic they used.
When the garbage bags started
filling up they were shocked.
They put the bags in an annex.
It quickly became a jumbled stack
They weren t the only ones
experiencing this. Crista says. "It
was the same with friends of
mine. With just two of them at
home they would fill up a
garbage bag every three days."
The Plastithon brought about a
paradigm change in the Morgans,
who now try to reduce the
amount of plastic they use.
Plastic is everywhere. We sit on
plastic chairs, write with plastic
pens, walk on plastic shoes, wear
plastic clothes and drink from
If we buy food from a super-
market it is nearly always
wrapped in plastic---and then we
carry those plastic-wrapped gro-
ceries home in a single-use plas-
tic bag. We even talk on plastic
None of that plastic ever disap-
pears. Plastic does not biode-
grade. Each and every bit of
plastic that was ever created is
still around. It just breaks down
into smaller pieces.
These bits and pieces of plastic
clog drains and kill wildlife. Tur-
tles choke on plastic bags, mis-
taking them for jellyfish and
birds mistake plastic for food.
It clogs up their stomachs and
guts. They slowly starve to death.
Those are the effects of plastic
that we can see.
There is also the invisible plas-
tic toxic effect.
Plastic is made up of chemi-
cals. When plastic floats in the
ocean it acts like a magnet for
Plastic in the ocean has a
thousand times the toxins com-
pared to the surrounding seawa-
ter. When an animal ingests it
those toxins enter its bloodstream
As predators eat small animals
the toxins bioaccumulate. That
means that animals at the top of
the food chain are most vulnera-
ble. That is bad news for us
Crista Morgan: "Recycling is a
necessity, not an option. If we
don t recycle we will ruin this
earth. We have to find a way to
make this happen in Trinidad.
Other countries have done it.
Even struggling Barbados has an
active and vibrant recycling pro-
The Government-run Green
Fund funds Plastikeep. Plastikeep
has been informed that it must
cease operations by March 31,
There is no alter-
native national pro-
gramme in place for
the collection of
plastic at community
The Morgans will
have no neighbour-
hood bins to deposit
their plastics. Instead
they now have the
option to drop off
plastic at the Sea
Lots depot of
exactly a family-
friendly option. It
will be a reversal of a
lot of good that was
The Morgans want
a national recycling
keep planted a seed
in their family.
They find it
the powers that be
would allow the
death of this seedling
without dealing with
what is simply mod-
ern garbage collection
and waste separation.
John Morgan: "It is
T&T has no proper
recycling. It is not
like it has never been
done before. Just pull
a page from another
country with a good
Crunch the figures,
do the research and
go with it! Time is
not on our side."
'RECYCLING A NECESSITY, NOT AN OPTION'
The Morgans: Crista, John and their daughter Tessa, next to their clothesline full of plastic bags, plastic food
containers and plastic food wrappers.
MARC DE VERTEUIL
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