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Sifnos Shuns Plastic Bags, Aims to Become ‘Greener’ than Ever

Sifnos Island Cyclades Greece

Sifnos Island Cyclades Greece / © Maria Theofanopoulou

The Cycladic island of Sifnos is putting plastic bags to sleep and instead opting for environmentally friendlier material pouches in efforts to become greener and self-reliant.

Photo source: Sifnos Island Cooperative (SIC)On the initiative of the Sifnos Island Cooperative (SIC), locals — starting from schools — are being educated on the need to move away from the use of plastic. In cooperation with Sifnos educators, youngsters are learning how their actions impact the environment and the future.

Words were first put into practice last April, when locals were called on to go shopping with a material bag or with the traditional handwoven “dorvas” or opt to pay an extra 10 cents for a plastic bag.

Sifnos_SES-goes-to-schoolLast week, the society held a special event titled “The Bag Goes to School” on occasion of World Earth Day.

In the meantime, the society is also exploring ways to make Sifnos self-sufficient in terms of energy aiming to tap into renewable energy sources such as the wind and the sea water.

“We are convinced that it can be done and should be done with tried and tested technologies,” SIC president Apostolos Dimopoulos said. Mr Dimopoulos is also the owner and manager of Aegean Thesaurus Travel, founded on Sifnos in 1987.

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To achieve their goal, SIC members are meeting with other societies across Europe in efforts to bring in foreign investors interested in backing the eco-projects.


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  1. Redbedlington Reply

    Excellent news. Well done, Sifnos, making a beautiful place even better.

  2. Peter Hodgson Reply

    This is a great initiative which I hope is adopted throughout the island and spreads to other areas and islands of Greece. Greece is well known throughout Europe for being the plastic bag capital as a plastic bag is given every time you shop anywhere.

    And where do all these bags end up? On the local rubbish tip of course or flying through the air and attaching themselves to trees and bushes or in the sea where they damage the local wildlife.

    I’ve been traveling to Greece for over 40 years and am dismayed that such an initiative has taken so long to emerge. Apart from having a negative effect on the local economy (and therefore profits) plastic bags flying all over the place do nothing to enhance the beauty of the islands.

    Top marks to Sifnos in leading the way on a more environmentally future which will benefit everyone.

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