In 2020 the world changed, and priorities shifted. Covid-19 means our “leaving the house” checklist has grown: “wallet, phone, keys… mask”. Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks and gloves are paramount for protecting people’s health. But like with many things from this pandemic, unintended consequences have surfaced.

The Marine Conservation Society’s annual beach clean featured PPE on their surveys for the first time this year. PPE was found by volunteers on 30% of the beaches they cleaned up and 69% of inland litter picks.

The health and safety protocols to manage Covid-19 are vital, but we mustn’t forget the environmental crisis.

And our friends at Singita – a One Planet Living community - are showing how. Despite the enormous pressures placed on their business this year, they have held steady on sustainability. By making the extra effort with cleaning processes and finding innovative solutions, Singita aims to maintain the highest health and safety standards AND tackle unnecessary waste.

Top ways Singita is staying sustainable during Covid-19 protocols

  • Masks are washable and reusable
  • Hot towels on arrival are made from 100% natural bamboo wood pulp and biodegrade within 45 days
  • Sanitiser and soaping stations use refillable dispensers and bulk-buy soaps
  • Singita’s dedicated staff will be cleaning, sterilizing and refilling refillable glass bottles, crockery, and cutlery daily, rather than replacing them with single-use items
  • The delicious guest snacks - locally sourced or made on site - will be individually wrapped in biodegradable corn starch or glucose bags in line with improved hygiene requirements
  • Some items are not recyclable - such as disposable latex gloves. These will be deposited and transferred into bio-hazard grade bins, disposed of safely and appropriately by specialist service providers
  • Guest cooking classes bring in donor funds which support their community programmes. To maintain the highest hygiene, Singita will continue to run these very popular classes outdoors. Fresh air and sunshine making for the healthiest alternative environment, while still raising much- needed funding
  • During the Covid lockdown, there were no guests to take out on game drives, but Singita ‘virtual drives’ have proved a massive success. They often have upwards of 100 guests enjoying the magical wilderness, but only using only 1 trip’s worth of diesel!
  • Singita is also educating its staff, ensuring they wear washable, reusable masks and encouraging them to support their local economy.

Covid-19 reiterated to Singita how critical it is for us to respect the environment and how important all their sustainability principles are. In such challenging times, they have done a phenomenal job at ensuring their Covid-19 measures also help them contribute to their sustainability goals.

What is your company doing?

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