The vessel, ambassador to the Race For Water Foundation, is continuing its odyssey by setting a course this Tuesday 27 February for Peru, where she is set to make landfall in Peru in mid-March, after a 10-day stopover in Central America. The latter stopover in Panama City proved to be intense and highly educational thanks in particular to the “recycled waste, clean oceans” campaign mounted by SUEZ, partner to this stopover, and to the diversity of the audiences encountered along the way.
Analysis of an action-packed Panamanian stopover
For 4 days there was a steady stream of visitors aboard the boat, totalling over 500 people in all, including 20 journalists, architecture students and engineers attending a workshop, as well as nearly 450 Panamanians who won a competition, and 40 representatives and local characters. These four days of action-packed operations were made possible thanks to the collaboration of our stopover partner, SUEZ.
Marco Simeoni: “Our Panamanian stopover was very successful, mainly as a result of the fantastic “recycled waste, clean oceans” campaign put together by SUEZ, our partner during this stopover. The diversity of the public audiences we encountered here and the quality of the exchanges give us a great deal of hope going forward about Panama’s ability to make the switch towards the more sustainable treatment of its waste. The idea of spending three days working with groups made up of architecture students and environmental engineers on managing the waste in their city is just great. The creativity of the projects presented makes us hopeful that we’ll see tomorrow’s cities being devised and designed in a sustainable manner for the protection of the environment.
Given that Panama City is the second largest producer of waste per inhabitant in Latin America with 1.6kg/day/inhabitant, it was also crucial to invite Panama’s general public aboard. Explaining that the ocean provides security for all life on earth and showing how plastic pollution is in the process of poisoning this vital resource helps us to get people to commit to better behaviour in this regard. It’s important that everyone understands that the best way of tackling plastic pollution of the oceans is to reduce their production of waste, and plastic in particular. The recycling-based games organised by SUEZ are also a fun way of introducing the population to the concept of selective sorting of waste and to environmental gestures that can preserve our oceans.
Finally, these events enabled us to meet with protagonists committed to making changes in Panama, whether it be in terms of the government, Panama City or the local industrial fabric. The new, recently adopted 173 law puts the treatment of waste in context and it’s the first extremely important step in the efficient management of waste.
The success of this stopover is testament to the relevance of our collaboration with SUEZ. We strongly believe in public/private/NGO partnerships for the implementation of sustainable projects. We now intend to continue the field work with SUEZ by supporting Panama City with the implementation of practical solutions to prevent illicit plastic waste from reaching the waterways in the first place.”
Rendez-vous in Lima in Peru from 15 March to 25 May for another equally intensive programme, during which we’ll have the honour of welcoming aboard Race For Water the father of the Blue Economy, Gunter Pauli.