Hey Earth champions! Get ready for a plastic revolution in Nigeria. No plastic party favours here—just communities taking charge and turning the plastic tide. Join us for a journey through the streets where change is happening, one bottle at a time!

Plastic Pandemonium? Not anymore!

Ever felt surrounded by those pesky plastic bottles? Well, Nigerian communities are saying enough is enough.

Nigeria generates a whopping 2.5 million tons of plastic waste annually, with Lagos State contributing 15%. Who cleans up this plastic mess? Some say it’s the government’s job; others argue it’s the duty of residents as environmental citizens. To try and tackle the problem, several amazing initiatives have made it their responsibility to train, recycle, and provide societal benefits to communities.

From disaster to recycling: local legends in action!

In Lagos, the community-led ‘Rite on the Beach’ initiative of recycling warriors has not just talked the talk but walked the walk, turning coastal communities into plastic-free havens. They’ve trained over 250 young people, engaged about 100 volunteers, created 50 jobs, and, most importantly, cleared over 100,000 bottles from beach communities. Victory over plastic pollution is more than a slogan; it’s happening!

Another initiative, empowering women and youth in coastal communities, is taking scheduled plastic collection to new heights. By keeping plastic off the streets and creating awareness, they’ve turned coastal regions into plastic-free zones. Plus, they’re giving care kits to vulnerable women and girls in exchange for 10kg of plastic waste. Talk about a win-win for communities in Lagos, Nigeria. 

Outside Lagos, Recycledgee in Ibadan is tackling hunger and climate action. They reward customers with cash or incentives for recyclables and run CROP (Corporate Recycling Operations Project) to train corporate organisations about the various parts of the recycling value chain. They launched the Green Campus Project to educate students on waste management and the menace of poor waste management while also creating avenues to recover PET bottles from school campuses through the installation of recycling bins.

From educating to creating jobs and giving back, these heroes make their communities as plastic-free and conscious as possible.

Community power unleashed!

Communities across Nigeria are teaming up against the plastic villain. From beach clean-ups in Lagos to plastic-free initiatives in Ibadan, the community spirit is contagious. You don’t need a cape to be a hero—just a reusable bag and a commitment to ditch single-use plastics.

In the grand finale of our plastic-free journey, it’s clear that the strength of community power is unmatched. From the bustling beaches of Lagos to the plastic-free havens of Ibadan, ordinary people are doing extraordinary things. As we unite in this shared commitment, the ripple effect grows stronger, transforming communities and paving the way for a plastic-free future. Together, we’re not just talking about change; we’re living it, one reusable bottle at a time.

Be curious! 

  • You’re the hero too. Feeling inspired to join the plastic revolution? Saying no to that plastic straw and opting for reusables is a great start. Small changes make big waves, and every plastic-free choice is a win for the planet.
  • Join the Plastic-Free Fiesta! Ready to jump on the plastic-free bandwagon? Start small: carry a reusable water bottle, tote your groceries in a reusable bag, and spread the word in your community.
  • Help protect the coastal communities and mangroves of Lagos State by signing this petition.
  • Volunteer at the annual Rite on the Beach festival.
  • Read more about plastic pollution in our archives: The flushable fallacy and England set to introduce a ban on single use plastics.

Featured image by Antoine GIRET on Upslash