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SABIC Waste-Free Environment event emphasises environment-friendly plastics

4164600 SABIC employees and their families joined in the launch of the 2014 Waste Free Environment initiative in Riyadh on February 20. The initiative, conducted in collaboration with the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA), unites nine cities across the Gulf including three in Saudi Arabia – Riyadh, Jubail and Jeddah.

In addition to SABIC employees and their families, the Waste Free Environment initiative involves the participation of volunteers from government agencies, schools, and NGOs with an interest in environmental issues. The launch event in Riyadh included an exhibition, awareness lectures and entertainment activities to emphasize the importance of environment preservation as well as a clean-up exercise in the Thumamah area.

Total participation in the 2014 Waste Free Environment initiative is estimated to have more than trebled in comparison to the 2,500 people who participated in 2103. Last year’s campaign resulted in the collection of 10,000 kg of waste, of which 35% was recycled.

“The harmonization of industrial development and environment preservation is essential to achieve the pillars of sustainable development at SABIC,” said Prince Saud bin Abdullah bin Thunayan Al-Saud, Chairman of the Royal Commission for Jubail and Yanbu and Chairman of SABIC. “Waste disposal is the responsibility of every citizen, as it plays a significant role in promoting the team spirit culture that helps keep our environment intact.”

According to data collected by GPCA, no more than 10% of plastic material is recycled in the Gulf region, while plastic waste constitutes 26 million tons of the total 80 million tons of waste produced in GCC countries annually.

Recycling plastic waste enhances the economic value of the material and contributes to the local economy. Using plastic in place of other conventional materials such as wood or aluminium can help reduce CO2 emissions and limit its dangers to the environment. Recycling ten 600 ml plastic bottles saves enough energy to operate a laptop for over 25 hours.

SABIC’s participation in the event is a part of the company’s ongoing effort to enhance awareness among local communities about the recycling of waste, especially plastic waste, and promote a broader awareness of the value of plastic products.

“The Waste-Free Environment campaign highlights SABIC’s commitment to producing more sustainable plastics,” said Mohamed Al-Mady, SABIC Vice Chairman and CEO. “As a leading plastics manufacturer, SABIC has a major role to play in raising public awareness about the societal benefits resulting from the responsible consumption of plastic products.”

“The positive response of SABIC employees and their families toward this initiative reflects the extent of their eagerness to contribute to the protection of the environment,” he added.

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