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GREAT PLAINS CONSERVATION STOPS USE OF PLASTIC STRAWS IN BOTSWANA

Ten years ago, Great Plains Conservation, phased out the use of plastic water bottles for guests and replaced these with aluminium canteens. On arrival at their lodges, each guest is given an aluminium canteen with fresh, cold water. When empty, canisters are washed, sterilised and re-used. Guests love this initiative and continually compliment the staff on these environmentally-friendly efforts.

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GPC are now further reducing their reliance on plastics and strengthening their positive impact on the environment by no longer purchasing or using plastic straws in any of their Botswana camps.

They recently started an initiative in the Tsutsubega community, which is located in the Okavango Delta about 25 kilometres northwest of Maun, as well as another in the Chobe enclave. Here ladies from the community sustainably collect Letaka reeds and turn them into drinking straws as a zero plastic waste initiative. The reeds are stripped, cut to length, the inside cleaned out and the ends are sandpapered to provide a smooth finish.

Each straw takes several minutes to makeand is labour intensive, but the initiative revolutionises the throw-away straw industry!

Trans Africa Safaris applauds these efforts and similar ones such as Kenya’s banning of plastic bags last year.

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