Youth have a critical role to play in environmental awareness and protection to create a more sustainable future.
The Fiji National University (FNU) student, Olivia Bera believes it is never too early to start actively participating in environment-friendly initiatives.
The 24-year-old from Vuniwai, Saqani in Cakaudrove is currently employed at Goodman Fielder under the Apprenticeship Scheme in the field of Electrical Engineering.
She is also a Student Environment Ambassador at Derrick Campus and was part of the contract signing between FNU, Waste Recyclers Fiji Limited and Pacific Recycling Foundation to implement the I-Recycle Hub.
The I-Recycle Hub will see specially designed bins built by Waste Recyclers Fiji Ltd placed at pilot locations at the Derrick Campus in Samabula and Natabua Campus in Lautoka to complement the University’s recycling initiatives.
“Environmental issues need to be highlighted, and this initiative emphasises FNU’s commitment to promoting sustainability amongst its students and staff,” she said.
“This will also maintain the reputation of the University and give students a positive learning experience.”
“As a Student Environment Ambassador, my role is to create awareness and participation amongst my peers so that we can undertake environment projects around campus.”
FNU Capital Projects and Infrastructure Director, Niranjwan Chettiar added that the I-Recycle Hub would be a key step in understanding how effective the initiative is and understanding the behaviour of the recycling bin users.
“A programme or an initiative is only a success if you have data to analyse its impacts,” he said.
“The two initial sites will provide possibilities for the University Community to recycle glass bottles and batteries for electronic remotes apart from papers, cardboards, plastic bottles, plastics, and aluminium cans.”
“Through this initiative, apart from providing knowledge through its research and programmes, FNU is taking environment concerns seriously and integrating it into its operations.”
“The Programme will also allow Waste Recyclers Fiji Ltd to train our Student Environment Ambassadors (SEA) based on the industry and other implementation lessons learnt.”