The Southern African Vinyls Association (SAVA) – supported by South Africa’s leading gumboot manufacturers, have stepped up to support the many volunteers and teams who will be cleaning up the country’s rivers on River Clean-Up Day taking place Wednesday, 15 September 2021.
This is the first year that a specific day has been set aside to remove all visible litter from rivers, streams and other inland water sources as part of Plastics SA’s annual Clean-Up & Recycle SA Week (13-18 September 2021).
“SAVA is a member of Plastics SA and therefore supports their many sustainability projects that are focussed on removing plastic litter from the environment and educating the public on the importance of recycling and the responsible disposal of plastic.
“Owing to the fact that most Polyvinyl chloride, commonly known as vinyl of PVC, products have a long term use (e.g. water pipes, cables, flooring, windows, fencing and decking) and that a very small percentage is used for packaging, vinyl is the plastic that is least responsible for polluting the environment.
“Nevertheless, it is important for the local PVC industry to support these clean-ups and to help keep the hundreds of individuals safe, clean and dry when they work on slippery riverbanks or enter the water to retrieve the litter,” says Monique Holtzhausen, Chief Executive Officer of SAVA.
The gumboot manufacturers wasted no time in responding when SAVA made the appeal for donations that form part of a Water Warrior kit issued to volunteers and clean-up teams.
Industry leaders Wayne Plastics, Neptun Boot and new kid on the block, Silver Lining Gumboots opened their hearts and hands with generous donations of much-needed gumboots to be used by river clean-up teams primarily in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal.
“The gumboots sponsored by Wayne Plastics will make a huge difference to the teams and is a major step forward towards our goal of achieving clean and safe waterways,” says Mark McClue of Action for Responsible Management of OUR Rivers (ARMOUR) – an NGO who supports and monitors various rivers extensively in Gauteng.
“We will be supporting experienced clean-up groups working in the Gauteng region, such as Jukskei Clean-Up and Hennops Revival, and will also be equipping various new community-led initiatives that are underway within catchment areas, such as Tembisa, Alexandra and Diepsloot – committed to make an impact downstream.
“An example of this is the collaboration with Triple P and training of 33 participants in water awareness, monitoring and testing, where the boots will be issued to these water warriors as part of their PPE”.
Gumboots sponsored by Neptun Boot will be donated to Durban Solid Waste Education and Waste Minimisation, Durban Green Corridor, Triple-P (I 4 Water) and Adopt-A-River for use in river clean-ups taking place in KZN, such as at the Umgeni River.
Silver Lining’s gumboots will be donated to the coordinators of river clean-up initiatives. Once they reach the end of their lifespan and need to be replaced, the gumboots can be collected, washed and recycled into new gumboots.
“There are many benefits to wearing a good pair of vinyl gumboots. Apart from their ability to keep feet dry because they are water-resistant, gumboots also provide good grip, sole support and flexibility that makes the boots comfortable to the wearer.
“PVC gumboots are easy to clean, help avoid the build-up of bacteria and will even shield volunteers from insect or snake bites while cleaning up the rivers. We cannot thank the vinyls industry enough for their loyal support.
“Plastics are valuable and a useful part of modern life, but should never end up in rivers, streams or oceans … unless it is in the form of gloves, gumboots or rubbish bags that are being used to keep the environment clean and litter-free!” concludes Douw Steyn, Sustainability Director of Plastics SA.
For more information, visit www.savinyls.co.za