People started assembling at various can collection venues from as early as 9am. Among the venues iwere Zabeel Park and Ibn Battuta Mall parking lot in Dubai, Radisson SAS Hotel in Sharjah, City Centre parking lot in Ajman, American International School in Abu Dhabi.
Dubai collected the maximum number of cans totalling 3,334, followed by Sharjah with 2,350 and Abu Dhabi with 695, according to an EEG officail.
The cans collected will be sent to the Lucky Recycling Factory in Jebel Ali and Sharjah where the aluminium is melted, formed into ingots and sold.
The winners of the campaign will be felicitated at a grand function on June 5 to commemorate World Environment Day.
According to an EEG official, the can collection campaign yesterday marked the end of EEG’s year-long Can Collection Campaign which has garnered 12,000kg of empty cans this year.
The can collection initiative which first started in 1997 at the initiative of EEG Chairperson Habiba Al Marashi has grown over the years.
Speaking to Khaleej Times, Habiba claimed the drive had raised an awareness in the community. “People have stopped buying cans and many school canteens no longer sell soft drinks. But the increase in waste cans collected is also an indication that people are carelessly throwing away cans instead of recycling them. Environment protection cannot be a solo effort, but requires group participation.”
Habiba disclosed that EEG started the can collection drive to support the government initiative, increase awareness and instill a sense of responsibility. She stressed the need to recycle cans.
“Paper and cardboard can be recycled only around five times. Not so with aluminium, as it can be recycled several times over and over again,” she said.
Shaleen Sukthankar, Grade 11 student of Emirates International Jumeirah and founder of Team Environment Awareness Management, who was at the Dubai drive with five members of her team, said through her participation she aims to create awareness among teenagers about waste management.
“Our school encourages community service. But I feel we need to do more and create something longlasting that will also help us mature as individuals,” she said.
Alexander Bimal, a teacher at The Westminster School taking part for the second time in the drive said, “ The drive has elicited a positive reaction from the students, especially the girls. We collected 45kg this year but hope to do better next year.”
Students from the Rashid Paediatric Centre also collected 56kg of cans.
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