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Monday, 24 June 2019
Luxury meets sustainability at AAT
The Victoria Falls Safari Estate Lodge under the Africa Albida Tourism (AAT) group has introduced an environmentally friendly natural water system that purifies water on site through a three stage water filtration system placed into glass bottles for various use.
The re-usable glass water bottles have replaced plastic bottles as part of the group’s measures to protect the environment. The move is also a major step towards the hospitality group’s goal of going single use plastic free by 2021.
In a statement, the group’s chief executive officer, Mr Ross Kennedy said their aim was to reduce plastic pollution to zero by year 2030.
“We shall now aim to reduce and then remove as much other plastic as possible from our operations, to a point in 2021 where there is hopefully zero, for example, plastic laundry bags, plastic shopping bags and other plastic bottles, such as juice bottles.
“It is important as a responsible business to keep pace with world trends in all conservation issues, where possible as what are already doing with the Victoria Falls Recycling project. We have researched and talked to colleagues before making informed decisions,” he said.
Mr Kennedy said the initiative to go plastic free carries with it many benefits like employment creation and reduce harm to wildlife.
“The impact of this initiative has many benefits. There will be over 80,000 less plastic bottles going out into the environment, and with less plastic in circulation that can find its way into the wild and therefore potentially harm wildlife, especially elephants.”
Abandoning plastic use, Mr Kennedy said has a major impact on waste management as it will reduce plastic waste most due to a lot of mineral water bottles.
“There is also benefit of reduced cost of water to our guests by providing water dispensers so guests may fill up their own water bottles to take away when going on activities, and by selling aluminium bottles in its souvenir shop,” he said.
The development comes at a time the Africa Albida launched the Victoria Falls Recycling project which recycles plastics, paper, glass and beverage cans which has helped lodges like the Victoria Falls Safari Lodge Estate to stop using plastic straws and adopting eco-friendlier paper straws.
Victoria Falls Recycling was launched last year in March by the AAT in partnership with Greenline Africa, Victoria Falls Municipality and PetrecoZiM. It has so faR baled and collected more than 24 tonnes of waste for recycling in its first year of operation.
AAT operates a portfolio of properties in Victoria Falls namely Victoria falls Safari Club, Victoria Falls Safari Suits, Lokuthula Lodges and The Boma- Dinner and Drum show as well as Ngoma Safari Lodge in Chobe, Botswana.
Over the years, AAT has undertaken a number of projects aimed at improving, promoting and safeguarding local tourism, particularly in Victoria Falls and surrounding areas like Hwange.