One of the most inspiring events held in town last month was the 3rd Thessaloniki Recycling Festival, a subject that needs to be taken more and more into consideration if we want this world to be a better place for next generations.
Actually the main activities of the Festival were focused on children and youngsters, introducing them to the theme of recycling as if it was a game. Kids always surprise us with their unexpected wisdom and the lessons they taught us through their sketches are really amazing. They show a world where recycling makes things beautiful, sunny and happy, while pollution and trash make everything gray, sad and ugly. A good education, according to the innate and instinctual respect that children have toward nature could really turn in the short term the future of this world in a greener and sustainable one.
For this proposal we had an interview with Thomas Psaras the secretary of the municipality of Thessloniki:
Why did you decide to create this festival?
Because we want that everybody, all the citizens of Thessaloniki, learn how they can recycle and to sensitize children to start doing it.
At which point is Thessaloniki about recycling?
This Festival has been organized for three years now. The previous two years were very successful and last year we had more than 6000 people, especially children. It is very crucial for them to learn about the recycling. Now we recycle the 13 % of the garbage of Thessaloniki, which is 50 tons per day.
So you think that he city is already improving?
Yes, of course. We started recycling in 2011. In Greece Thessaloniki is one of the city that recycle more, and it’s very high in the list. Our target as municipality is to double the percentage from 13% to 26% in 2019. But I think we will get it already by the end of 2017.
What about the huge use of plastic bags?
We try to persuade all the supermarkets to use no plastic bags. We hope to get good results quite soon.
Next to the children activities the festival offered also art exhibitions with artworks created by recycled materials. The example that most jumps to the eye is a horse made by spoons, baking trays, ladles and other iron objects that had been thrown away.
So it is very important to avoid the waste of plastic when we don’t need it, as for example straws, supermarket bags (the ones in cotton are green, nicer and much more useful!) and to carefully make a separate collection of waste that could come to a new life and, most of all, save our planet from sadness.