GIS– 1st September 2017: “Trash Out”, an innovative mobile application aiming to enlist the involvement of the community in safeguarding the environment by spotting and reporting the exact location, nature and volume of illegal trash, was launched yesterday at Emtel-World Innovation Centre, in Ebène.
The Minister of Technology, Communication and Innovation, Mr Yogida Sawmynaden; the CEO of Emtel, Mr Teddy Bhullar; the Country Leader of ‘Let’s do it! World’ (Mauritius), Dr Raj Chintaram, and different key stakeholders were present at the launching ceremony. The project is a joint initiative of Emtel and the NGO ANPRAS (African Network for Policy Research and Advocacy for Sustainability).
On the same occasion, other initiatives were launched: Smart Cleanup 2017 campaign, with the tagline Be Smart, Let’s Clean up Mauritius, as part of activities to mark World Clean-up Day; Be Smart Let’s Clean Up challenge, a competition comprising six categories to span over the month of September, and targeting students, Village, District and Municipal Councils, citizens and public and private sectors; and the website of ‘Let’s do it! World’ (Mauritius) on www.letsdoitmauritius.org.
In his address Minister Sawmynaden, spoke on the importance of engaging Mauritians, especially young people, in protecting the environment in as many ways as possible and, lauded the availability of a practical mobile App to help in this endeavour. This initiative, he said, is a follow-up of the Clean Up and embellishment campaign launched in March 2017 by the Prime Minister which is geared towards sensitising citizens on the need to keep the country clean.
The Minister recalled the key role of innovation in transforming our country into an inclusive high-income economy and by doing things differently in a better way, including identifying waste and its subsequent cleaning. He congratulated Emtel and ANPRAS for the initiative in making the cleaning process of Mauritius, Smart and, assured that his Ministry will provide the necessary support.
For his part, Emtel CEO pointed out that his company has always kept in mind the its impact of its operations on the environment and on that score several measures have been implemented to keep a low carbon footprint. Helping preserve our land today is not only for our own benefit but also that for the future generations, he said.
The Country Leader of ‘Let’s do it! World’ (Mauritius) made a presentation on how to use the Trash Out Mobile App as well as on the Be Smart Let’s Clean Up challenge. According to him, waste is no longer waste and now is the time to cash on waste through the adoption of innovative means by converting thrash into energy. He elaborated on the adoption of the 5R Approach to zero waste to fight trash: refuse, reduce, reuse, recycle and rot.
Trash Out and ‘Let’s do it!’
The Trash Out Mob App has been developedin Estonia, by the ‘Let’s do it! World’ movement. It can be downloaded on Google Play or iTunes, enabling users to localise thrash which is then channelled on a server to a database which can be shared with local authorities, ministries and other stakeholders.
‘Let’s do it! is a civic-led mass movement that began in 2008 in Estonia that brought together 50 000 people to clean up the entire country in just five hours. Since then, ‘Let’s do it! has spread the model of cleaning one country in one day all over the world. Since the launch of the mobile app over 16 million people in 113 countries have contributed in cleaning illegal waste.
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