Wednesday, June 16, 2010

The Thankless Recycler

Josaphat Small works on a small plot of land less than a mile away from the landfill in North St. Lucia. He sorts computers, cans, plastics, and scrap metal into piles. In a few words: Josaphat Small runs a recycling center. However, few people know of this enviro-friendly entrepreneur and his business.

With no help from the government, no advertising, and a bare bones website – few people know about this place, let alone take the long drive out here to recycle their waste. Josaphat Small recounts story after story about his plight to recycle on the small island of St. Lucia, and his previous work trying to motivate others to do the same. Unfortunately, each story ends the same. The fact is that few people recycle in St. Lucia. Even the businesses and hotels don’t recycle.

Mr. Small tells us that an upscale hotel (hint: the name of the hotel is an article of clothing you wear) wanted to be a certified green hotel, so they came a’knocking on Mr. Small’s door. Mr. Small gave them some bins and told them what and how to sort the products so that he could put them in their proper place to be shipped off. The hotel complied long enough to get the certification and then quit shortly thereafter. It was just too difficult for them to do.

This small recycling center has no sign, no traffic, and for some reason has been moved from plot to plot by the government. As soon as it starts up, the government mandates that it must be moved to another location. This humble recycling center has probably moved four times, and is set to move again in the near future.

But Josaphat Small keeps plodding on. He insists that recycling is one of the few ways to save our future. With a very small staff, they sort every weekday and sometimes if they’re lucky some of the landfill employees drop off bottles and cans that are readily found on top of the trash. Thank you, Mr. Small for all that you do!


Valerie said...

Aw Mr. Small, you have a BIG heart! Judy will you tell everyone about the Recycling signs in St. Lucia????

kcinthecape said...

There isn't a lot of recycling here. I think about the Green Team and Adam all the time and how frustrated y'all would be. I spent the first day at my office walking to the kitchen to throw everything away because I assumed that the blue bins in my room were for paper only - not the case.

Keep fighting the good fight!

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