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Update on Recylcing Program After Earthquake

It is well known by now the devastation that Haiti had recently experienced.  Many people are either involved in putting their lives back together or helping someone else they know who needs assistance.  But the country itself, in addition to rebuilding the infrastructure that is needed for daily activities to resume, needs to address another problem that is slowly developing into a serious one that can linger and bring the country back to its pre-quake condition if remains as is.

As Don Loepp of recently published in his article on March 26, 2010 "the quake has left the survivors with a less serious headache, but one that the plastics industry might be able to solve: how to get rid of thousands, if not millions, of used PET bottles that once contained donated drinking water."

"The country has been destroyed and, with so many people needing aid, nobody has thought about what to do with the waste, including the PET containers," Carline Seide-Murphy, president of the Haitian Community Development Project, told Stephen Downer, Plastics News' correspondent in Mexico City, in a recent telephone interview.

Seide-Murphy contacted Plastics News to ask for help in finding a PET recycler willing to collect and process the PET waste, after she was contacted with a request for help from Haiti.

The Caribbean island's population, she said, has been left with "an overwhelming amount of plastics to throw away and no one seems to know what to do with them [the PET bottles]." HCDP normally works with a Haitian recycler, Tropical Recycling, but Seide-Murphy said she has not heard whether the local recycler is in a position to continue with the type of service it was giving before the quake.

"I'm waiting for a response on their status... [but] I haven't heard anything yet," she said in an email.

Downer gave Seide-Murphy the name of one PET recycler, with operations in the U.S. and Mexico, and volunteered to pass on any other information.

Thanks to Steve Downer (Mexico  City +52 (777) 326 3680) for his efforts and to the published article help is on the way.  Mr. Stephan Sajous of Haiti Recycling has reached out to Ms. Seide-Murphy and had informed HCDP that Tropical Recycling has been severely damaged, and Haiti Recycling is available to assume the responsibility.

Mr. Sajous pointed out HCDP has a "great project to have the schools participate in recycling plastics bottles in Haiti.  This is a great idea and will teach students how important it is to save the environment at the same time the funds collected from recycling bottles can go toward helping the schools."

Haiti Recycling buys and collects in three grades:

  • HDPE Natural Bottles (Tampico, Gallon Gourmet, Juna types) 3 gourdes lbs
  • HDPE Colored ( Motor oil types, Detergent Types) 2 gourdes lbs
  • PET Bottles Mixed Colors( Fiesta, Coca Cola, King cola types) 2 gourdes lbs

If you are interested in having your school participating in this students recycling project please contact HCDP at or .

Physical address in Haiti:
Haiti Recycling
Bon Repos, Lathan (Usine G.S. Industries en Plaine)
Port-au-Prince, Haiti W.I.
Tel: 509-2813-1259 or 509-2813-1260
Vonage: 305-395-4421

More Information

Haitian Community Development Project
PO Box 35 Niverville, NY 12130 * (518)784-4395 *

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