Gisborne taking up the Refill challenge
Gisborne District Council is backing the Refill Challenge that encourages people to swap to reusable water bottles and refill from the tap for 30 days.
In collaboration with Taiki E! and the YMCA, the council is supporting the initiative through registering local refill sites and subsidising 25 local businesses to join the campaign.
“The council wants to support 10 further local businesses to register with RefillNZ,” says council waste minimisation facilitator Darnelle Timbs.
Participating “sites” or businesses receive a RefillNZ sticker for their window to show they are a refill station where people can fill up their water bottle for free.
They are registered on the RefillNZ app and website, meaning people can find out where any one of the 2500 refill sites are throughout the country.
The Refill Challenge is run by RefillNZ, with funding from the Ministry for the Environment Waste Minimisation Fund. Their goal is to stop the tide of single-use plastic bottles and for more people to rehydrate with tap water.
“There's so much sense in this challenge,” Ms Timbs says. “It takes three litres of water to produce a one-litre water bottle so refilling your reusable bottle actually saves water and money, and reduces waste.
“Only one in five plastic bottles gets recycled. To reduce the impact of plastic waste in landfill and the environment we encourage refilling your reusable bottle.
“And there's no shortage of taps around town which can now be located via the RefillNZ website or app.”
Those who sign up to for the Refill Challenge at www.refillchallenge.org.nz will be in the running for a prize, and RefillNZ will send tips, tricks and other useful information to help keep you motivated, such as an impact calculator to work out how much plastic you have reduced, as well as how much sugar you have avoided.
“This is a fun way to get on board, and you could even make a permanent switch to refills and reusables,” Ms Timbs says.
Gisborne District Council's part in the Refill Challenge is being coordinated by liveable communities student summer intern Petra Sparks.
If your business would like to join the RefillNZ campaign contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Further information is available at www.refillnz.org.nz