Meet James Wakibia, Kenya’s waste superstar

James Wakibia has already become one of the people who help to resolve numerous of Kenya’s waste problems. First, he worked as a photographer, and now he deals with environmental protections.

James Wakibia’s initiative has already become viral and Tuko Breaking News reveals his story.  James made up his mind to fight the enormous environmental devastation caused by the overuse of plastic bags. The ex-photographer invoked the government of Kenya to make use of plastic bags. By doing this, he has already proved the fact that a single person can protect the world.

In 2015, Wakibia first used the hashtag #banplasticsKE with Judi Wakhungu, the Secretary for Environment and Natural Resources, when he tweeted back her support. Thus, the environmental activist started a massive a social media campaign. Later James Wakibia changed the hashtag to #IsupportbanplasticsKE, which immediately enlarged his online presence. Professional education helped Wakibia in his further activity. In a few weeks, the newly-made waste superstar went to Nakuru (mid-west of Kenya) to take pictures of people with various banners. They all depicted his prominent hash and then posted all the photos on Twitter and Facebook.

All this allowed Wakibia instantaneously become a local waste superstar in Kenya. As a result, from August 2017, Judi Wakhungu announced the end to importation and the manufacture of plastic bags for both commercial and household and packaging in Kenya. Therefore, now only plastic bags in direct contact with a product for health reasons are allowed. For economy, it means that until August 31, all suppliers, manufacturers, and importers must find biodegradable alternatives.

Wakibia praised this government decision. In his article for Standard Media, he wrote that for a long time his country had suffered very much from many harmful effects of plastic bags. The activist especially emphasized the fact that they had caused clogging of rivers and drains. It thus contributed to numerous floods across the country. “Plastic bags killed millions of marine and domestic animals. They breed Kenya grounds for malaria causing mosquito and plenty of other illnesses,” he reported with frustration.

Kenya has already tried to fight plastic bag pollution for many times already. Thus, in 2005 and 2007, the government forbade plastic bags with a thickness of 30 microns. In 2011, all bags with 60 microns were banned.

Due to such men as James Wakibia Kenya`s nature will have a chance to survive.