In order to properly address the on-going garbage crisis across Ambergris Caye, Mayor Daniel Guerrero is hoping to increase cleaning efforts by putting forth a new recycling program. Paper, glass bottles, Styrofoam, and plastic are not only unappealing, but they contribute to environmental and marine pollution, vector borne diseases, and various health hazards.
According to Mayor Guerrero, San Pedro needs to ‘clean up’ their act urgently. “San Pedro is Belize’s leading tourist destination, and we are trying to maintain that. We want to implement this recycling program so that the town is clean, attractive, tropical and friendly,” said Mayor Guerrero.
Although San Pedro does not have recycling bins, the San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) is looking to invest in purchasing these bins to reduce trash. The idea is for residents and visitors to place their recyclable items (paper, aluminum tin, and plastic) in separate bins around public areas.
Mayor Guerrero also told The San Pedro Sun that he is looking to emphasize glass bottle recycling. He wants to give glass jars, empty soft drinks, liquor and wine bottles a second life. He stated that the SPTC will be giving out incentives. “This program will be an asset to the community, especially to the underprivileged. The SPTC will pay you for your glass, and this might encourage students to collect glass bottles to be sold. I plan to move forward with these recycling programs, and develop scholarships for students,” said Mayor Guerrero.
Mayor Guerrero believes recycling glass has many benefits. He is planning to implement a process that will refine recycled glass into two different sizes, and one will be used as sand to build roads, while the other could be used for adornment. He hopes by implementing these tactics, the region will benefit both economically and environmentally. Mayor Guerrero hopes that San Pedro can become an example to other similar municipalities and create a case study that proves that recycling should be a priority in Belize.San Pedro Sun