We were very pleased to hand over the keys and donate one of our trucks to VI Plastics, a start up plastic recycling company here in the BVI.
VI Plastics can process all types of plastic material. Most plastics are marked with a ‘resin identification’ code (a number from 1 – 7) somewhere on the product. Unmarked plastics, like plastics bags, shrink wrap, cling wrap and styrofoam can also be recycled. VI Plastics will be creating woven furniture and polywood for construction in 2”x2” and 4”x1” lengths up to 8′ long.
We have a recycling area for plastic, glass, and aluminium near the security hut at the entrance to Nanny Cay. We will be adding an additional area near our main garbage skip, and smaller satellite recycling bins in key areas around the property like the Beach Bar.
“On a small island like Tortola we recognize the importance of reducing, reusing, and recycling,” said Miles Sutherland Pilch, general manager of Nanny Cay. “Plastic is probably one of the worst waste products to bury or burn. We´re going to start working hard to reduce our use of single-use plastic and ensure that any we do use is sent to VI Plastics for recycling. We’re looking forward to being their first customer for pool-side chairs too!”
We will be rolling out our plastic reduce-reuse-recycle plan in our restaurants for the new season:
- Reusable cups, plates and cutlery in the Beach Bar
- No straws
- Bagasse (sugar cane) clamshell food containers, no cutlery supplied unless requested.
- Paper bags, not plastic.
- Water fountains for personal reusable bottles.
Carrie Wright, the founder of VI Plastics, first came to the BVI in 2014 as a tourist with her family for a sailing vacation. Originally from Canada where recycling is a common practice, she found it difficult to put plastic and glass materials into the regular garbage bin for disposal. VI Plastics “represents Carrie’s passions for environmental protection, collaboration and innovation to advance the social good”. She began talking with local businesses and environmental stakeholders about a potential solution. Less than two years later, she moved from Canada with her family to start a plastics recycling facility on Tortola.
“Nanny Cay is a corporate leader in environmental stewardship in the BVI. They were early recycling adopters and continue to take new steps to incorporate sustainable practices. Their generous support is very helpful to VI Plastics as we gear up for an official launch.”
Irma delayed the official start up by a year, but Carrie and her team are now raring to go.
VI Plastics joins recycling enterprises like Green and Clean (VI) Ltd and advocacy groups such as not-for-profit Green VI who have been working for many years with the Department of Waste Management to create and foster a viable recycling system through collaboration, education, innovation and policy.
Anyone that is aware of the horrendous long term impact of plastic in the world’s oceans will understand what a welcome addition this company is to the BVI’s community and environment.
For anyone that doesn’t, we highly recommend watching “A Plastic Ocean” on netflix which will have you choking on your plastic water bottle. Alternatively, contact Green VI who can screen the shorter version of the documentary and work with your group to create an action plan to reduce, reuse and recycle.
The glass collected in recycling bins goes to Green and Clean (VI) Ltd on Virgin Gorda. This company crushes used glass bottles into glass aggregate that is being used in concrete and many other applications. Green and Clean (VI) Ltd is also taking all the aluminium cans for crushing and export for recycling into new aluminium.
While running a marina and boatyard is inherently not a green business, we are doing what we can. Over the years Nanny Cay has been making constant improvements to the facilities, and considerable strides in making itself fully self-sufficient in terms of infrastructural needs. We are also steadily greening operations where we can. You can read more about our efforts here – https://nannycay.com/infrastructure-social-responsibility/