Civic pride and responsibility

SUVA is the most cosmopolitan and multicultural city in the South Pacific and it is the responsibility of its citizen to look after its environment.

These were the words of the Suva Retailers Association president Vinay Kumar, who said a clean city and central business district (CBD) was a must for Suva.

Mr Kumar said most retailers were getting more compliant with disposing of their garbage by following the guidelines set by the Suva City Council (SCC).

“There are few retailers who spoil it for other retailers by dumping cardboard boxes and other rubbish on the footpath,” Mr Kumar said.

“SCC are active in fining the perpetrators.

“Anti-litter polices and fines are in place.

“Therefore, this comes back to the individual and their civic pride and responsibility.

“There is a company that will pick up recyclable paper and cardboards free of charge in Suva.

“Major litter issues seem to be outside the Suva City area in some suburbs and sometimes on the foreshore. We work with the health inspectors of SCC to deal with any clean-up issues we have.

“Currently nothing major has been planned with regards to a clean-up.”

He said the garbage disposable and cleaning of the streets in the city was done by SCC and the association was working with the council to address issues as and when it arose.

He said one of the initiatives at a very early stage was the implementation of uniform litter bins for all shops in the CBD area.

“This requires planning and funding with all stakeholders, therefore it will take some time.

“The biggest issue is that some of the citizens who lack civic pride throw garbage wherever they feel. To change this inherent behaviour is a Herculean task for any government or organisation,” he said.

He said it was too early to measure the effects of the environment and climate adaptation levy (ECAL) on plastic bags six months fromt its implementation.

“By the end of this year, we should be in a better position to measure the effectiveness of the plastic levy on the environment,” he said.

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